Texas Lawmakers Want To Spend $1 Billion To Buy More State Parkland
Is it time to invest in state parks around the state of Texas? Texas lawmakers say it is and voters will have the final say an whether or not a "new golden age" is coming for the park system in Texas.
On Tuesday the Texas House approved two bills that would create a Centennial Parks Conservation Fund that would invest $1 billion to purchase more land for the Texas state parks system. But first, the issue has to go to the voters. Senate Bill 1648 and Senate Joint Resolution 74, would create the fund if voters approve the fund in an election. Of course all of this must be signed off on by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, which according to the Texas Tribune, Abbott has before been in favor of increased funding.
“This would create a new golden age for our state parks,” said Luke Metzger, the executive director of Environment Texas. “We have a lot to celebrate. What a great birthday present to give all Texans for the state parks system’s 100th.”
The bill and resolution by Sen. Tan Parker, R-Flower Mound, already have received an OK from the Senate will now head to the governor’s desk for final approval. The governor has called for an increase in the budget for state parks, and advocates are optimistic that he will approve the bills.
If he does, the issue will go before voters as a constitutional amendment in November, and the state could begin spending the money as early as Jan. 1.
Texas ranks 35th in the nation for state park acreage per capita. During and after the pandemic state parks have seen an increase in the amount of visitors.
Sounds like a great investment to me. More people should experience the great state parks and just the outdoors.