Texans To Vote On Proposition That Would Help State Parks

Barbara Schwarz
October 22, 2019 - 7:29 am
Dinosaur Valley State Park

Credit: J.Burkett Photo

DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - Proposition Five would ensure a portion of the sales tax from sporting goods stores would be dedicated to parks and historical sites.  It is one of ten propositions Texans are considering for constitutional amendments. 

Jenifer Sarver with the Texas Coalition for State Parks says in 1993, lawmakers passed legislation to help fund this, but that revenue has been diverted to the general fund.  "Over the lifetime of this tax, only about 40 percent has even been spent on parks and historical sights.  So proposition five simply says you need to spend the money as was intended by the law.  Voters will see no difference, it's not a new tax."

She says in the last couple of legislative cycles, it's been fully funded. "But there have been years where it was funded by only 20 to 30 percent.  So we want to make sure that lawmakers use these funds as intended."

She says the proposition has wide, bi-partisan support and that these funds will also help local, neighborhood parks. 

Sarver adds many of our state parks were built in the 1930's and their infrastructure is outdated. "You have parks that are outdated. You have restroom facilities that need to be redone, You have plumbing, parking lots and shelters that need to be redone."  She says there are parks that haven't been able to open, like Palo Pinto state park.

Sarver says the parks department is also able to fund neighborhood parks with matching grants. She says the measure has wide, bi-partisan support