Santa Ana River Conservancy Plan Discussed

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State Sen. Lou Correa will explain legislation aimed at restoration, conservation of river on July 15

By Bettye Miller on July 7, 2014

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Santa Ana River
Photo courtesy Christine French

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — State Sen. Lou Correa, D-Santa Ana, will discuss efforts to create a Santa Ana River Conservancy at the University of California, Riverside on Tuesday, July 15, from 4 to 5 p.m. in Orbach Science Library Room 240.

The event is free and open to the public. Parking permits for Lot 13 are $8 and may be purchased at the kiosk on West Campus Drive at the University Avenue entrance to the campus.

Sen. Correa is the author of Senate Bill 1390, which would create a Santa Ana River Conservancy administered by the State Coastal Conservancy to address resource and recreational goals of the Santa Ana River region.

“The Santa Ana River is an extraordinary natural resource of statewide significance. The river has been subject to intense development and is in need of restoration, conservation, and enhancement,” Correa wrote in the legislation. “The establishment of the Santa Ana River Conservancy Program will provide the state with the necessary structure to plan and implement restoration and preservation projects and recreation opportunities, and enhance the overall condition of the Santa Ana River.”

The Santa Ana River is the largest stream system in southern California, covering an area of about 2,700 square miles in parts of Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside, and Los Angeles counties.

Many communities in the Inland area are park-poor, and Orange County communities with the worst access to parks lie along the river in north Orange County, where household incomes are low and large concentrations of people of color live, according to Correa.

“Despite vast areas of parkland in the region, many communities in San Bernardino and Riverside Counties are park poor, with less than three acres of green space per 1,000 residents,” the legislation notes. “This is particularly true in the communities that were built out before the development boom of the past few decades. As more working class families moved to the area in search of jobs, the population in these older neighborhoods swelled, but public resources for parks and recreation were not invested proportionally to the growth.”

Correa’s presentation is sponsored by UCR Friends of the Santa Ana River and the Librarians Association of the University of California, Riverside.

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