Rec and Park to hold panel on Golden Gate Park as revenue source 

A slew of park advocates have a bone to pick with the Recreation and Park Department for using Golden Gate Park as a revenue source during harsh budget times.

For example, Rec and Park has imposed a $7, nonresident Botanical Garden fee, welcomed $70 Segway tours, and has plans for a new manager to build a cafe in the Stow Lake Boathouse.

During the past two years Rec and Park has had to layoff about 60 employees and closed 42 clubhouses to compensate for budget woes. Park officials say the new revenue sources are tasteful, have community support, and also help make the park safer.

Several park advocates who have watched the process unfold, and object to the concessions, will be at the Commonwealth Club on Wednesday for a panel discussion.

The description of the event is stated as follows: “Loved and enjoyed by millions of San Franciscans and Bay Area families, Golden Gate Park may see dramatic, potentially devastating, changes as plans for privatization and industrial development come together. Join supporters, neighbors and members of local organizations whose aim is to protect the park’s heritage.”

Rec and Park Commission President Mark Buell also recently added himself to the list of panelists, which should help even out the discussion.

Networking starts at 6 p.m. and the discussion at 7:30 p.m.

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Kamala Kelkar

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