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Park Funding Battle Royale

The upcoming election's Proposition B, or The Clean and Safe Neighborhood Parks Bond, is being opposed by environmentalists and some neighborhood groups. The $195 million bond is supposed to improve the safety and quality of 200 city parks and playgrounds, enhance water quality, replant trees, and clean up environmental contamination along the waterfront - you've probably seen the pro-Prop B commercials of people waxing poetic about how special parks are. But opposition is not happy with how the Rec & Park Department has been spending money lately, saying money from the 2008 bond measure "has gone to questionable projects" (with nearly half of the money still unspent) and that the department needs an operational overhaul. The Sierra Club thinks the bond contains too little for habitat restoration and the language for environmental projects is vague, while neighborhood groups worry about privatization of the parks, saying money should go to the maintenance of existing facilities instead. [Bay Nature/Photo: Vicki Moore]