MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley announced a new campaign Friday benefitting Milwaukee County parks.
The "Love Your Parks" campaign was created in an effort to rally support and funding around parks in our area, which have been in high demand.
As the city and county of Milwaukee continue to face the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more people are finding themselves at the area's parks and trails.
Because of this increase traffic, the areas need even more support and maintenance. So, this campaign was created to give the community more opportunities to help through donations and volunteering.
“Parks and trails have proven themselves to be critical to life in Milwaukee County. They strengthen our community, create jobs, improve our health, and provide benefits for every single resident,” Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley said.
According to a press release from Crowley, "the park system is still facing a $10 million budget shortfall due to the loss of revenue from services including rentals, special event permits, and visitor admissions."
Taxpayers contribute $.30 per park, so the rest of the funding is reliant on rentals and fees - things that aren't happening right now due to the pandemic.
“This summer, the pandemic has forced us to close or delay opening of a lot of those revenue-generating services. Drastic cuts to spending and seasonal staffing are having direct impacts on park maintenance," said Guy Smith, Executive Director of Milwaukee County Parks.
Because of current conditions, more and more visitors are noticing longer grass, full trash cans, and closed facilities. Many of those visitors are asking how they can help. That's where the idea of this new campaign came from.
Volunteer options include small group projects like helping clean up a specific park, or becoming an anytime anywhere volunteer that assists in picking up trash anywhere they can.
The county is also asking for donations from individuals or businesses wanting to help.