Don’t worry, this blog isn’t turning political. But if parks are important to you, you might be curious what the presidential candidates have to say about them. Recently the bipartisan Mayors for Parks Coalition invited the two campaigns to answer their question.
The question: If you are elected President of the United States what would you and your administration do to help highlight the importance of city parks and advocate for additional city park funding, including the Land and Water Conservation Fund?
The Trump campaign has not responded.
The Clinton campaign’s response:
Across the country, our parks and public lands are a source of refuge, respite, and recreation for their visitors. Hillary Clinton believes our system of parks and public lands is not only the envy of the world, but that it has been one of America’s best idea[sic] for over 100 years. Hillary believes we ought to be doing all we can to maintain these important resources and make sure they are open to all Americans – at the national, state, and city level.
Working with Congress, Hillary will expand the scope and roughly double the funding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) by creating a new American Parks Trust Fund. This program will address the needs of our national parks, and will support the local and state governments working to expand and improve upon their open spaces. Importantly, this fund will provide necessary resources to rehabilitate our urban parks and, for the first time, will make resources directly available to tribal nations to restore their homelands.
She will also commit to improving over 3,000 city parks over a ten-year period – investing $40 million annually in the Urban Parks and Recreation Recovery Program, and an additional $10 million annually in AmeriCorps. These investments will provide opportunities for Americans across the country to experience the outdoors and get involved in national service.
And Hillary believes it’s important for our parks and public lands to tell the stories and reflect the contributions of all Americans to our nation’s shared history and culture. But communities of color, women, and LGBT Americans are currently underrepresented in our parks and public lands. She will work to protect historic sites and cherished lands and waters in a way that better reflects the proud diversity of our nation.
All of our children deserve to grow up breathing clean air, drinking clean water, and experiencing the beauty of this country. By investing in our city, state, and national parks and public lands, Hillary will work to preserve our natural resources for future generations to enjoy, regardless of their ZIP code.