That is why park advocates, including MCA, promoted full funding of this year's proposed budget for MoCo Parks.
The budget was approved.
From the Montgomery Parks Foundation:
The loss in tax revenue resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic made this a difficult time to fund new initiatives, but our elected leaders recognized the value of parks and approved a budget that allows us to maintain existing levels of service and – in a few areas, at least - to make some important improvements.
The County Council, which makes the final decisions on our budget, recognized the critical role that parks play in providing a healthy and safe outlet especially when residents are unable to participate in many activities and have come to depend on our parks system to get outdoors and get some exercise. That’s why the six-year capital improvement program includes investment of $19 million to build and improve athletic fields, $10 million to construct and renovate trails, and $3 million to achieve the goals of Vision Zero. These figures represent significant increases over the prior budget.
Among the new projects included in the budget is “Legacy Urban Space” (LUS), which is modeled after the visionary $100 million Legacy Open Space program that has preserved thousands of acres of the county’s best natural areas. The LUS program includes an $18 million down payment over the next six years to acquire parkland in the county’s most densely populated areas.
We also received a small increase in our annual operating budget that will allow us to begin to catch up on maintenance backlogs in parks and provide staff to support ongoing and recently completed projects, such as the Josiah Henson historic site, Silver Spring Intermediate Neighborhood Park, Columbia Local Park, Battery Lane Urban Park, Wheaton Regional Park and Edith Throckmorton Neighborhood Park. These funds will allow us to continue providing access to nature, fresh air and exercise, historic and cultural resources, and the opportunity to take a break from the stress of the world around us.
Those wanting to do a deep dive into the county budget can do so here.