AB 1716 will expand economic prosperity for the region
The American River Parkway is a crown jewel for recreational space in our region and a vital piece of our riverfront. It attracts 8 million visitors annually, generating $364 million in economic benefit for our community.
Now, with Assembly Bill 1716, we have an opportunity to amplify that impact. The bill, introduced by Assemblymember Kevin McCarty, will establish the Lower American River Parkway as a state conservancy. While ensuring local control of park management is preserved, AB 1716 helps the American River Parkway overcome a disadvantage in receiving state funding.
Since 1996, the State of California has devoted $740 million to rivers, and $660 million (90%) of that sum has gone to rivers with conservancies. The American River Parkway has only received $3 million in that time.
Additional state dollars would be used to fund grants that would help restore and protect the Parkway while enhancing recreational, educational, and cultural opportunities.
The Sacramento Metro Chamber Board of Director and its civic amenities team pushed for AB 1716 because we recognize the return on investment that comes from quality public spaces. Amenities like the American River Parkway are critical to helping craft and preserve a vibrant, active, family-friendly community that brings people together and helps retain and attract talent.