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Hagan Introduces Urban Parks Revitalization Legislation

Bill will revitalize urban communities with jobs and green space

Monday, September 24, 2012

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Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Kay Hagan today introduced legislation aimed at revitalizing economically distressed urban and metropolitan communities by improving access to recreation facilities and green space. The Community Parks Revitalization Act will boost economic development and provide healthy options for at-risk youth in America’s inner cities.

“This legislation will not only provide for the rehabilitation of neglected recreation facilities and green spaces in our city centers, but it will also promote job creation and opportunities for safe and healthy activities in urban public sites,” Hagan said. “Investment in parks and recreation attracts business, promotes conservation in a non-regulatory fashion and enhances quality of life for hard-working North Carolinians and their families.”

Michelle Wells, Executive Director of the North Carolina Recreation & Park Association said, “North Carolina is excited to see Senator Hagan introduce this bill.  Parks are great places for all of our citizens and offer avariety of benefits including improved physical and mental health, assist with providing clean air and water and offer a place in the community for socialization for all ages and backgrounds.”

“This bill is one of the most innovative and comprehensive pieces of legislation to help parks and expand innovative recreation programs across the country,” said Jim Garges, Mecklenburg County Director of Parks and Recreation.  “It’s important to have planning, construction and programming funds to implement these essential parks and programs. Senator Hagan should be congratulated for introducing this legislation.” 

A companion to the House bill, H.R. 709, this legislation authorizes the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development to establish and carry out an urban revitalization and livable communities program to provide Federal grants to urban areas for the rehabilitation of critically needed recreational areas and facilities and for the development of improved recreation programs.  Specifically, the Community Parks Revitalization Act would provide matching grants to support communities in:

  • Creating jobs and leveraging private investment by supporting capital projects that rehabilitate, and construct new, parks and recreation areas and facilities; 
  • Combatting childhood obesity by connecting youth with the outdoors and improving overall public health by increasing access to recreational areas and facilities; 

  • Providing innovative, cost-effective, and non-regulatory solutions to environmental challenges; and 

  • Addressing the recreation needs ofdisabled veterans, military families, as well as disadvantaged youth.

The bill is supported by the following North Carolina and national organizations:

North Carolina Organizations 

North Carolina Recreation and Park Association

North Carolina State Parks

Charlotte-Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation

 

National Organizations

 

Alliance for Biking and Walking

Alliance for Community Trees

America Bikes

American Camp Association

American Planning Association

American Society of Landscape Architects

City Park Alliance

Coalition for Recreational Trails

International Mountain Biking Association

League of American Bicyclists

National Alliance for Healthy Communities

National Alliance for Hispanic Health

National Recreation and Park Association

Northeast Midwest Institute

Outdoors America

Outdoor Industry Association

Police Athletic League

Rails to Trails Conservancy

Smart Growth America

Sports & Fitness Industry Association

Sustainable Urban Forests Coalition

Trust for Public Lands

United States Soccer Foundation

United States Tennis Association

United States Conference of Mayors

Up2Us

You can follow Senator Kay Hagan on Twitter at @SenatorHagan, visit the Senator’s Facebook page or view videos on the Senator’s YouTube channel

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