Stop Privatization of a local public park to benefit a private high school
The city of San Jose Parks and Recreation department plans to turn the John Mise neighborhood park in West San Jose into a soccer/softball sports complex by replacing an open, grass field with unhealthy artificial turf.
Vast majority of the neighborhood residents and users of the park did not ask for this, are not in favor of this plan and love the grassy park the way it is. This was communicated to the City by over 200 neighborhood residents at a public hearing on October 26, 2011 at Archbishop Mitty High School. Despite opposition from the local residents, the parks and recreation department continues to move forward with their agenda.
The primary beneficiary of this “renovation” would be Archbishop Mitty High School, a private high school located one block from John Mise park, which plans to be the major user of the sports facilities and parking while contributing less than 10% of the approximately $4-5 million cost of renovation. The City of San Jose in essence plans to subsidize Archbishop Mitty High School’s athletic program and parking expansion at the expense of local residents.
For the 2011-2012 fiscal year, the City of San Jose faces a $115 million budget deficit. Due to ongoing 11 years of consecutive budget deficits, the City of San Jose has had to reduce public safety workforce such as police officers and firefightera, cut branch library hours down from 6-7 days/week to only 4 days/week and make additional cuts to essential city services. Under such difficult economic situation, it is a criminal waste of public money to destroy a green public park in order to subsidize a private high school’s athletic program.
This renovation, besides depriving the residents of an open natural, peaceful park, will also lower property values, which in turn will lead to an increased budget deficit due to the resulting negative impact on property taxes.
Please sign the petition to protect John Mise Park and preserve it’s open, grassy space.
The San Jose Parks and Recreation Commission will meet to vote on the proposed “renovation” of John Mise Park on March 7, 2012 at City Hall, Room W-119, 200 E. Santa Clara Street, San Jose, CA at 5:30 p.m.
For more information:
San Jose Parks and Recreation department Proposed John Mise Park renovation project:
Over 200 neighborhood resident already spoke up during the public hearing on October 26, 2011 at Archbishop Mitty High School that they are not in favor of the “renovation.” The mayor and the council members of San Jose, and members of San Jose Parks and Recreation Commission should respect the wishes of the people instead of “renovating” this public park for the benefit a private high school by turning a large open grassy field into artificial turf and additional parking. The plan grants Archbishop Mitty High School priority use of the proposed sports facility and additional parking.
I urge the City of San Jose and the San Jose Parks and Recreation Department to remove John Mise Park as a potential site for any kind of development or significant renovation, and appeal to you to preserve this area and protect this open, grassy public park for the benefit of local residents and the City of San Jose.