California Lawmakers Propose $3 Billion Bond Measure for State, Local Parks

Pelicans fly over a great blue heron on the shore of the Salton Sea State Recreation Area.  (David McNew/Getty Images)

SACRAMENTO — California lawmakers are proposing a nearly $3 billion November bond measure to pay for improvements at state and local parks.

Supporters say many local agencies cannot afford to maintain their outdoor spaces.

The Assembly approved the measure Thursday on a 55-14 vote, with six Republicans joining Democrats in favor. The Senate must also approve it before June 30 for it to appear on the statewide ballot.

It would join a crowded ballot that is expected to include dozens of measures.

The state Department of Parks and Recreation would oversee nearly $2 billion of the fund. The department came under fire in 2012 for hiding nearly $54 million during a budget crisis that threatened to close parks.

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Democratic Assemblyman Eduardo Garcia of Coachella says he's confident in the changes made since then.