By Susan A. Neufeld
Mountain Communities – The following is a statement from Second District County Supervisor Janice Rutherford regarding the letter from Rim of the World Recreation and Parks District, dated October 27, 2017.
Statement by Supervisor Rutherford Responding to ROWRPD Letter of October 27, 2017
I read with great interest the letter (and subsequent “clarification”) by ROWRPD Chair Lawrence A. Mainez about the District’s planning and interest in parks/recreation services in the Crestline/Lake Gregory community.
In an effort to avoid misunderstanding, I wish to express my thoughts directly and re-iterate my support for the appropriate role and work of the County’s Regional Parks Department.
The Regional Parks Department is very different from ROWRPD (and, indeed, any local parks & recreation organization, including those operated by incorporated cities). The County simply does not offer neighborhood parks or recreation programming. Regional parks are operated for large-scale activities and charge substantial entry/parking/rental fees that are not associated with neighborhood parks. We do not have a revenue stream to offer recreational programs.
The County is aware that many of our unincorporated communities desire these types of parks and recreation programs, and we encourage those who are interested to pursue the establishment or enhancement of local government entities that are designed and funded for those purposes.
The County’s desire is for the Lake Gregory Regional Park to flourish. We want to provide residents and visitors with an opportunity to enjoy our local environment, and to allow the micro-economy of Crestline/Lake Gregory to benefit from visitors. Right now, the best means for that is the current contract operation with CalParks. The County is open to creative ideas and acknowledges that there are significant unmet capital needs at Lake Gregory.
The community of Crestline/Lake Gregory and the broader ROTW community, need to talk among themselves about how ROWRPD can best serve its constituents and their desire for local parks and programs. Those discussions should include the budget, the Board make-up, and strategic planning that emphasizes future facilities and distinct community needs. Those conversations should happen exclusive of the County’s planning for the future of Lake Gregory Regional Park.
I welcome and appreciate input from my constituents about Lake Gregory Regional Park. I hope you will not hesitate to contact me to offer your thoughts on this , or any other, county matter.
Janice Rutherford Second District Supervisor County of San Bernardino