By: Mark Wilson, Travis Audubon Board Member
Texas has an incredible system of state parks and other lands that provides bird watchers and bird lovers important opportunities to access and enjoy birds, and to provide vital habitat for those birds. But our parks and historic sites are overflowing and stretched to the limit as all Texans seek out outdoor opportunities in a state that is 95% privately owned. State Park visitation alone is nearing 10 million visitors annually. All of those visitors coupled with chronic underfunding has placed a strain on the system. If we are to meet growing demand and ensure future generations, the parks systemneeds a dedicated stream of funding. This fall, we have an opportunity to do just that.
On November 5, 2019 Texans will head to the polls for a Constitutional Amendment Election. Proposition 5 or “Prop. 5” is one of 10 measures on which Texans will be asked to vote. Prop. 5 will dedicate revenue from the Sporting Goods Sales Tax, so those dollars can only be used by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Texas Historical Commission on public parks and historic sites, and not for any other purposes. Importantly, Prop. 5 requires no new taxes or fees. A YES vote on Prop. 5 on Nov. 5 will protect Texas’ natural areas and historic sites, so we don’t lose the very things that make Texas a special place in which to live. Travis Audubon supports this measure, and the Board and the Advocacy Committee ask all of our members to get out and vote for Prop 5!
More information at. Travis Audubon is a member of the Texas Coalition for State Parks.