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Construction and maintenance of parks and open space increase property values. These findings have determined that in many cities increased property tax revenue has repaid city investment in parks.
Jessica Lappin on Parks
Jessica Lappin for City Council
Part 1 – Yes/No Questions
a. Will you work toward committing at least 1% of the overall city budget to the Parks Department’s expense budget over the course of your term? YES. The Parks Department budget has been cut significantly and consistently over the years. The city has to reverse this trend by allocating the funding that is necessary to maintain our open spaces.
> If so, would you dedicate revenue earned through park concessions to parks maintenance and operations, without simultaneous decreases in baseline funding? YES. Yes. I also believe that the city should explore creative options for expanding parks concessions in unobtrusive ways.
b. Will you establish objective, publicly accessible maintenance standards for all park properties in all five boroughs? YES. While public-private partnerships have proved effective for some of the city’s well known parks, many smaller parks in low-income neighborhoods are suffering from neglect.
c. Will you provide in your Mayor’s Management Report park ratings by borough and community board in addition to the citywide level? The Mayor’s Management Report should rank our parks by borough, community board, and at the citywide level.
> Will you make the official Parks Department “property list” that specifically delineates all 1,700 properties available online? Yes. New Yorkers should be able to access that information easily and online.
> Will you make publicly available details of the private funding that helps to maintain and operate many of our public parks? YES
a. Will you support legislation that requires regular NYPD reports to the City Council on crime in parks (ie. Intro. 470)? YES. Tracking crime in our parks will give us another useful tool to help keep New Yorkers safe.
b. Will you work toward making parkland part of the city’s CompStat system? YES
5. Open Space/Natural Areas
Part 2 – Open Questions
a. What specific actions would you take to ensure that every park in every neighborhood has green ball fields, working water fountains and open bathrooms?
"On both a local and citywide level, I would work with my colleagues to secure capital funding for our parks and recreational facilities."
"I would advocate for roaming crews to be hired as fixed crews for parks maintenance."
"I support increased funding for the Parks Department and the establishment of a dedicated revenue stream for parks."
2. Recreation & Youth Programming
· What specific actions would you take to revitalize the recreational and amateur sports programs that have been decimated by years of budget cuts?
"As City Council Speaker Gifford Miller’s Chief of Staff, I helped secure funding for the East 54th Street Recreational Center, the John Jay Bathhouse, and the Roosevelt Island Youth Center. These public facilities are heavily utilized by New Yorkers of all ages for sports and recreational activity. As a Councilmember, I will continue to support these types of facilities across the City."
· If NYC is awarded the Olympics in 2012 or 2016, what specific actions would you take to ensure that parks that are changed, altered or improved as Olympic venues are properly funded and maintained after the Olympics are finished?
4. Community Gardens
· What specific actions would you take to reduce the cost of the annual insurance premiums that community gardeners must pay?
5. Stadiums & Amateur Sports
· What specific actions would you take to require that professional sports organizations assist in maintaining and operating public parks near their facilities?
· How would you provide more multi-purpose facilities for amateur sports and recreation?
6. Waterfront Parks
· How would you improve upon recent investment in the NYC waterfront?
Historically, the City has not done a good job at protecting and developing open space along its waterfront. We need to turn our City’s waterfronts into beautiful, accessible open spaces by creating long-term plans for our waterfronts."
· What are your plans to ensure that citizens in all five boroughs have access to waterfront parks?
· How would you fund the especially costly maintenance of waterfront parks?
7. National Parks
· What steps would you take to promote the use of and access to our city’s national parks (ie. Gateway National Recreation Area, National Parks of NY Harbor)?