Cohn tells neighbors: Parks could face new round of budget cuts

Sacramento City Councilman Steve Cohn is predicting deep budget cuts to local parks this year in light of the city’s $35 million-$40 million budget gap for the 2010/2011 fiscal year.

Cohn’s worries about new cuts come after the city cut the Parks and Recreation Department by $8.3 million last year.

“I fear that the cutbacks in parks will actually be more severe this year,” Cohn told a handful of neighborhood leaders gathered at Hart Senior Center Monday night.

Cohn, who presented information about his district at the Neighborhood Advisory Group meeting, said the city may look for ways to work with neighborhoods and the business community to maintain the parks.

“As we all know, most of our neighborhoods in Midtown and East Sacramento are really designed around parks,” Cohn said.

Cohn represents District 3, which includes the neighborhoods of Mansion Flats, Marshall School Midtown and Boulevard Park.

Councilman Ray Tretheway, from District 1, also made remarks to the neighborhood group. His district includes the neighborhoods of Alkali Flat, Old Sacramento and China Town Mall.

Among other things, Tretheway said that a new community garden will open at Zapata Park in Alkali Flat this summer.

Councilman Rob Fong, whose district includes Newton Booth and Poverty Ridge, among other neighborhoods, could not attend the NAG meeting due to illness, said Gerald Celestine, the facilitator of Monday night’s meeting. Fong represents District 4.

Kathleen Haley is a staff reporter for The Sacramento Press.

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