INTRODUCED BY   Senator Steinberg

                        FEBRUARY 18, 2011

   Relative to "Parks Make Life Better!" Month.


   SCR 14, as introduced, Steinberg. "Parks Make Life Better!" Month.

   This measure would declare March 2011 as "Parks Make Life Better!"
   Fiscal committee: no.

   WHEREAS, A 2009 public opinion research study conducted by the
California Park & Recreation Society, revealed that 98 percent of
California's households visit a local park and 50 percent of
California's households participate in an organized recreation
program annually; and
   WHEREAS, California's residents value their local parks and
recreation services, as these parks and services provide access to
the serenity and inspiration of nature, outdoor spaces and places for
play and exercise, facilities for directed and self-directed
recreation; activities that facilitate social connections, human
development, the arts, and lifelong learning; and a positive
alternative for youth that help lower crime and mischief; and
   WHEREAS, the State of California's 2010 Obesity Prevention Plan
states all of the following:
   (a) One in every nine California children, one in three teens, and
over 50 percent of adults are already overweight or obese and that
obesity affects virtually all age, income, educational, ethnic, and
disability groups.
   (b) The state's childhood obesity epidemic and related health
conditions and associated costs are expected to increase unless
concerted and coordinated efforts are made to increase opportunities
for children and youth to engage in age-appropriate, high-quality
physical activity programs during nonschool hours.
   (c) Research has shown that where people live, work, and play
impacts obesity. For example, in Imperial County, 73 percent of
adults are overweight or obese, while only 43 percent of adults are
overweight in the City and County of San Francisco.
   (d) California's costs attributable to physical inactivity,
obesity, and overweight in 2006 were estimated at $41.2 billion. In
contrast, a 5 percent improvement in each of these risk factors could
result in annual savings of nearly $2.4 billion.
   (e) To address obesity, the State of California must ensure that
all California residents have access to safe places to play and be
active; and
   WHEREAS, California's 10 Step Vision for a Healthy California is a
call to action to transform the state so that all Californians can
enjoy healthy eating and active living, resulting in all of the
   (a) Every day, every child will participate in physical activity.
   (b) California's adults will be physically active every day.
   (c)  Neighborhoods, communities, and buildings will support
physical activity, including safe walking, stair climbing, and
bicycling; and
   WHEREAS, The Governor, the Legislature, and citizens have
prioritized efforts to increase physical activity, access to nature,
spaces for play and exercise, the arts, lifelong learning, and social
connections among children and adults through the approval of
statewide park bond programs such as Proposition 84 (The Safe
Drinking Water, Water Quality and Supply, Flood Control, River and
Coastal Protection Bond Act of 2006), the Statewide Park Development
and Community Revitalization Program of 2008; the California Complete
Streets Act of 2008, that requires cities and counties to consider
all users of streets and roads when plans are revisited; and Senate
Bill 375 (Chapter 728 of the Statutes of 2008) which links
transportation, housing, and land use planning to support sustainable
communities; and
   WHEREAS, The California Park & Recreation Society promotes the
positive personal and community benefits of parks, open space,
trails, recreation facilities and programs, nature education, and
sports for able and disabled children, teens, adults, and seniors;
   WHEREAS, Participation in physical activities can lower a citizen'
s risk of developing chronic health problems such as high blood
pressure, asthma, heart disease, and diabetes, and also help children
grow up to be healthier adults; and
   WHEREAS, The California Park & Recreation Society has released a
statewide public awareness campaign, Parks Make Life Better! to
inform citizens of the many benefits of utilizing parks, facilities,
programs and services; and
   WHEREAS, The Legislature recognizes the importance of access to
local parks, trails, open space, and facilities such as swimming
pools, skate parks, dog parks, tennis courts, nature centers, and
museums, for the health and development of ALL Californians; now,
therefore, be it
   Resolved by the Senate of the State of California, the Assembly
thereof concurring, That March 2011 is proclaimed to be "Parks Make
Life Better!" Month in California; and be it further
   Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate transmit copies of this
resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.