Park supporters on the email list of Shelby Farms Park and the Shelby Farms Greenline got an email over the weekend warning that the future of one of the county’s most popular community assets might be on the line.
The County Commission, in a push led by Commissioner Terry Roland, may vote to cut some or all of the county’s funding to the park at the commission meeting Monday, June 20.
The email limits a separate request that supporters write letters to the editor of the Commercial Appeal. We at The Daily News, of course, would gladly welcome them as well.
The Shelby Farms email reads, in part:
“We know your passion for Shelby Farms Park and Shelby Farms Greenline. We urge you to show your support by letting your county commissioners hear from you about what these incredible public amenities mean to you and to Shelby County.
-We first ask that the county honor the management agreement we entered into mutually. Our public-private partnership with Shelby County was formed to better serve the community. As part of that agreement, our ten-year management contract shows that the county will continue to provide the $576,000 it was spending on maintenance for the land under county management.
-For every dollar the county gives, we raise at least four more from private sources to meet the operating needs of the Park and Greenline. We are careful stewards of the county’s investment, and we have honored our commitment.
-We assumed management of Shelby Farms Greenline, Woodland Discovery Playground and Wolf River Pedestrian Bridge and did not ask for an increase in county funding, even though the new amenities added almost $250,000 to our operating expenses.
-Shelby Farms Park and Shelby Farms Greenline are two of the popular, important and transformative features of our community, with more than 3 million visits a year by our estimation. If we lose our funding, we may not be able to continue operating Shelby Farms Park and Shelby Farms Greenline.”