Council agrees to funding method for park improvements
The City Council has formally agreed to dedicate any revenue from park land sales to renovations at remaining parks.
Earlier this week, the council voted to amend the provisions that govern the Park Fee Fund, to include the receipt of revenues gained from the sale of park land. The proposal was made by Ward 8 Councilman Randy Warren and others earlier this year, restricting any revenues that come from the sale of city parks to expenditures centered on parks and recreational purposes. Council members liked the proposal, but had to wait until an agenda item could be drafted to take formal action.
The action comes on the heels of a concerted city staff effort to analyze the city’s parks inventory, which includes both traditional park land that contains playground equipment and other amenities that residents enjoy, and vacant properties that contain no amenities. Despite the designation of a park, those vacant tracts aren’t used by residents but still must be maintained by the City of Lawton, administrators have said.
To lessen the effect on parks maintenance employees (and provide more time and resources for parks that are used), city staff initiated a program to sell the park space by sealed bids. For example, the City of Lawton is making plans to sell Tomlinson Park, a 4-acre tract on Northwest 38th Street and south of Greer Park and Kid’s Zone, a plan that adjacent residents oppose.