November 2010 - Parks & Recreation - 28

ADVOCACY UPDATE
continued from page 26

Advocacy Briefing
Public Health Funding Saved: The NRPA advocacy team
scored another recent victory with the defeat of an amendment
that would have cut federal funding for vital public health initiatives that benefit many parks and recreation agencies and
communities across the country. Thanks in large part to the advocacy efforts of NRPA members, the Senate voted down an
amendment offered by Senator Johanns to the Small Business,
Jobs, and Credit Act which sought to offset other costs in the
bill by stripping money from the Prevention and Wellness Trust
Fund. Had the amendment passed, programs such as ACHIEVE
and Communities Putting Prevention to Work would have been
virtually eliminated. A special thank you goes out to all of the
NRPA members who helped protect these important programs.
LWCF Fair Share: NRPA continues to reach out to Senate offices and Administration officials in efforts to include full, dedicated, and equal funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund
(LWCF) in any new energy legislation that may be considered
before the end of the year. In the event that the Senate does not
take up this issue, NRPA advocates are still encouraged to contact their members of Congress on the importance of providing
states and local communities with a fair share of LWCF funding.
Urban Parks: The NRPA public policy staff is working with
other members of the Urban Park Coalition to advance the urban parks bills that have been introduced in the House and will
soon be introduced in the Senate. NRPA is also working to include language in the Livable Communities Act (S. 1619 and
H.R. 4690) that will include parks and recreation agencies in
urban and other areas as entities eligible to receive funds under two new grant programs established by the legislation.
Check out the latest Advocacy Insider and visit the Advocacy
-Action Center on www.nrpa.org.

26	 Parks & Recreation

No v e m b e r 2 0 1 0

www.NRPA .ORG

Houston Department of Parks and Recreation, says he calls on the numerous
friends groups in his community when he
wants to " get things done. " He notes that
The Park People, an advocacy-focused
friends group operating as a non-profit
in Houston, were instrumental in helping
to pass the Parks and Open Space Ordinance of 2007. This ordinance secured
funds for the development of park space
and enabled the city to work with developers to increase the quality of life for all
Houston residents. The Park People have
now merged with the Houston Park Board
and serve as the leading advocacy arm
of the organization.
Turner continues to work with The
Park People and various other friends
groups such as the Quality of Life Coalition. " When I have an issue that needs
grassroots support I know that I can
make a few phone calls and mobilize
thousands of people, " Turner asserts.
He adds that his local friends groups not
only enhance his access to the movers
and shakers in his community but that
" they are the movers and shakers. " He
also points out that the various community groups help bring together what
can at times be the competing interests
of business developers and conservation
groups. As Turner works on current initiatives to further develop linear parks,
connect trails along Houston's bayou
system, and provide all Houston neighborhoods with access to green space
and parkland, he knows that he can always count on his " friends. "
His advice to other agency leaders
who may not have experienced the same
level of success in working with friends
groups is to " find the common denominator and single focus issues that are of
the most interest to your community. "
Turner notes that parks and recreation
agencies, now more than ever, cannot
simply rely on their capital budgets.
Partnering with friends groups is one of
the most productive ways to create additional sources of revenue and communicate important advocacy messages to
fellow citizens and elected officials at all
levels of government.



November 2010 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of November 2010 - Parks & Recreation

November 2010 - Parks & Recreation - 1
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