Sacramento, Calif. – Citing broad benefits to California’s birds and other natural treasures, as well as its people, Audubon California today announced its strong support for Proposition 68, a $4 billion bond measure on the state’s June 5 primary ballot. The California Clean Water & Safe Parks Act will fund a number of important priorities for Californians, including local, regional and state parks, clean drinking water projects, flood protection, and habitat projects that are vital to the state’s diverse wildlife.
“Audubon California has long fought to protect California’s birds and natural landscapes – and make it possible for more people to experience these treasures – and that is why our organization emphatically supports Prop. 68,” said Sarah Rose, executive director of Audubon California. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to invest in safe parks, clean water, and the vibrant wildlife that are so important for Californians’ quality of life.”
Audubon California was part of a broad coalition of organizations working closely with lawmakers during the 2017 legislative session to put Prop. 68 on the ballot. This critical opportunity comes at a time when millions of Californians don’t have access to safe parks, trails, and recreation areas. Moreover, the cycle of drought and extreme weather is already taking a toll on California’s natural treasures, and threatens our communities with flooding and ecological degradation.
These same forces have also exposed our state’s antiquated water infrastructure, bringing into doubt our ability to provide clean, safe, and reliable drinking water to our residents. Lastly, with most of the bond funding for vital conservation programs running out in the last few years, it is time for Californians to make the next investment in the protection of the natural resources that make California’s parks and open spaces destinations for millions of visitors every year.
“While California’s treasures are enduring, for some key areas – such as urban parks and the Salton Sea – Prop. 68 represents one of our last chances to set things right,” Rose added. “There is real urgency to this funding.”
For the birds of the Pacific Flyway, and the roughly one million people living around the Salton Sea, Prop. 68 has profound importance. The bond measure includes $200 million for vitally important dust mitigation and habitat restoration at the Salton Sea, where water diversions are creating a public health disaster and destroying habitat.
About Audubon California
Audubon California is building a better future for California by bringing people together to appreciate, enjoy and protect our spectacular outdoor treasures. With more than 350,000 members and supporters in California and an affiliated 48 local Audubon chapters, Audubon California is a field program of the National Audubon Society.