On June 5, 2023, the US Conference of Mayors (USCM), at its 91st Annual Meeting in Columbus, OH, adopted a new city park resolution that urges Congress to provide robust federal investment for our nation’s urban parks and trails. The resolution passed unanimously. The newly elected USCM President and Tourism, Arts, Parks, Entertainment, and Sports Committee Chair Reno, NV Mayor Hillary Schieve sponsored the resolution.
The resolution states that the U.S. Conference of Mayors views urban parks as essential infrastructure for 21st-century cities and believes everyone living in urban areas should have equal access to parks, green spaces, and recreational opportunities. The resolution highlights the health, economic, and environmental benefits of city parks and the need for more federal investment in underserved communities.
“I was thrilled to sponsor this important city parks resolution that was formally adopted by the USCM. City parks play a vital role in the social, economic, and physical well-being of America’s cities and their residents. This newly adopted USCM resolution shows the broad support from mayors across the country for city parks and the need for increased federal investment,” said Reno, NV, Mayor and USCM President Hillary Schieve.
As cities become more densely populated and concerns about the impact of climate change increase, elected officials, planners, and community advocates are using parks to help address critical urban infrastructure and public health issues. City parks provide access to recreational opportunities, spur local economies, combat crime, and protect cities from environmental impacts. Parks are now recognized as powerful tools to address many of the challenges cities face today.
“Study after study show the health, economic, and environmental benefits of parks. Mayors are on the front line of helping cities solve numerous challenges and understand how parks, with their multiple benefits, can help address those challenges. Mayors understand that parks are now essential infrastructure for any city,” said City Parks Alliance Executive Director Catherine Nagel.
USCM CEO and Executive Director Tom Cochran states, “The U.S. Conference of Mayors is appreciative of the advocacy work of City Parks Alliance and its bipartisan Mayors for Parks Coalition, which has increased federal investment in our nation’s city parks. The last few years have provided an unprecedented amount of potential funding for parks and trails through the Great American Outdoors Act, the American Rescue Plan, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and the Inflation Reduction Act. Mayors are committed to ensuring that everyone living in urban areas has equal access to parks, green spaces and recreational opportunities and are grateful for the help City Parks Alliance is providing so that cities can obtain these new funds.”
City Parks Alliance is the only independent, nationwide membership organization solely dedicated to urban parks. The mission of City Parks Alliance is to educate and elevate a diverse constituency to leverage the power of parks in shaping equitable, resilient, and thriving cities.
The United States Conference of Mayors is the official non-partisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are over 1,400 such cities in the country today. As the leading voice for cities in our nation’s capital, the Conference brings together mayors from across the country to engage with the White House, Administration, and Congress to ensure that federal policy addresses the priorities of cities.