Stop Corporate Takeover of Jean Klock Park!
  • Petitioned Michael Reynolds

This petition was delivered to:

National Parks Service, Midwest Regional Office
Michael Reynolds
U.S. Secretary of Interior
Ken Salazar
Outdoor Recreation Planner, NPS
Bob L Anderson

Stop Corporate Takeover of Jean Klock Park!

    1. Petition by

      Serena Weber

      River Falls, WI

Benton Harbor, Michigan is a predominately African American community with most of its citizens living in poverty. When Whirlpool closed their factory there last year, the residents were left with practically nothing -- an exception being Jean Klock Park. 

Jean Klock Park is half mile of globally rare freshwater sand dunes that had been gifted to the city of Benton Harbor, Michigan in 1917 by John and Carrie Klock in memory of their daughter Jean Klock "FOR THE CHILDREN" - "in perpetuity" - "FOREVER." Before he deeded the land, John Klock sent a letter titled, "It Is More Blessed To Give Than To Receive", to the Mayor and Common Council of the City of Benton Harbor. In that letter, John Klock made the intent of the donation clear: "It is our wish that the lakefront always be preserved in its natural state and be a playground for the children and a bathing beach for all the people." And for nearly a hundred years it remained a pristine public park for all to enjoy.

But now Whirlpool wants to take that away, too. 

Newly elected Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has appointed an emergency manager to go into impoverished Benton Harbor, essentially stripping the city's elected officials of all their power. This Governor-appointed emergency manager now has the power  to sell Jean Klock Park.  The City has already allowed a Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Club  and a glitzy second home community to be built in the park.  The dunes are now home to three holes of a Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course. And now the Emergency Manager can sell what remains of the park.

The only thing standing between the transfer of the park from the people of Benton Harbor is that it must be approved by the National Park Service. Tell the National Park Service to deny the transfer in defense of the land, the citizens of Benton Harbor, and the Klock family!

 

 

 

 

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Reached 1,500 signatures
    2. Clown Show Continues in Benton Harbor

      Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Benton Harbor's Emergency Financial Manager alters Jean Klock Park's hours - again. This time, he didn't even bother telling anyone. Eclectablog has the story.

    3. EFM Restricts Access to Jean Klock Park, Ignores Objections

      Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Benton Harbor's unelected "Emergency Financial Manager" has ordered that Jean Klock Park can only be open to the public between the hours of 10am-10pm during the summer. It's unclear how this helps Benton Harbor's financial situation.

    4. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      The exploitation of Benton Harbor:

    5. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Prisons are funded better than schools in Michigan.

    6. Reached 500 signatures
    7. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      A local commissioner has filed a recall petition against Benton Harbor's Emergency Financial Manager.

    8. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Lansing resident Doug Warren calls on Michigan residents to unite against attempts to sell off the state's resources.

    9. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Benton Harbor's Emergency Financial Manager signs an order declaring when Jean Klock Park can be publicly accessible:

    10. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      People are using Facebook to organize a repeal of the EFM law:

    11. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Lifelong Michigan resident Patricia Bayer commented, "No emergency could justify selling off this park...Please do the right thing and deny the transfer of the land. Keep it a park."

    12. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Local officials in Michigan worry about triggering a takeover by an Emergency Financial Manager.

    13. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      “I am genuinely afraid of the fact that the remainder of the park could be conveyed into other ownership.” he said, “Benton Harbor has nothing else to sell off.”

    14. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Emergency Manager's 'autocratic powers' puts the spotlight on Benton Harbor:

    15. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Benton Harbor is Michigan’s ‘canary in the coal mine’

    16. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Statewide campaign to repeal the "Emergency Financial Manager" law begins.

    17. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      The person responsible for Michigan's now infamous "Emergency Financial Manager" law, State Rep. Al Pscholka, was formerly the Vice President of a company involved in the corporate takeover of Jean Klock Park.

    18. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Jean Klock Park plaintiffs question Michigan's "Emergency Financial Manager" law:

    19. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Stephen Colbert weighs in on Michigan's "Emergency Financial Manager" law:

    20. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      More on the protesters who greeted Gov. Snyder in Benton Harbor on Saturday:

    21. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Eclectablog is live-blogging protests of Gov. Rick Snyder during his appearance in Benton Harbor today:

    22. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Lawmaker withdraws from Benton Harbor's parade today after learning of planned protests:

    23. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Demonstrators will greet Gov. Snyder at this weekend's Benton Harbor annual parade:

    24. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Eclectablog reports on the burgeoning industry of Emergency Financial Managers:

    25. Jess Kutch
      Petition Organizer

      Emergency Financial Manager plans to rescind the City Commission's resolution.

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Christine Sheppard FAYETTEVILLE, AR
      • almost 2 years ago

      Michigan's parks are an important part of the tourist economy.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • JESSICA NOWLAN YPSILANTI, MI
      • almost 2 years ago

      These people have lost so much already.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Joshua Petersen LAWRENCE, KS
      • almost 2 years ago

      Here in Kansas, most public spaces have been hijacked. The state is largely devoid of beauty. Don't let the same happen to you. You won't know what you're sacrificing till it's too late.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Christopher Holbrook FINDLAY, OH
      • almost 2 years ago

      This is cruelty for profit. Cruelty for Profit is EVIL! Period.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Laura McCleery WATERFORD, MI
      • almost 2 years ago

      As a Michigan resident, I believe that every inch of our Great Lakes shoreline is precious and belongs to every one of us!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

    Develop your own tools to win.

    Use the Change.org API to develop your own organizing tools. Find out how to get started.