School district seeks ownership of county park

Mar 19, 2014 7:54 PM

Over the last 20 years, the Evergreen Union School District has poured over $360,000 into making improvements to a park that's adjacent to the middle school.

The only problem is, that park does not belong to them.

"For the past several years, there's been some discussion about how they could have a greater role of actually operating the park, and maybe even owning the park so they could invest in longer term improvements, that kind of thing," said Tehama County Chief Administrator Bill Goodwin.

Noland Park takes up over 17 acres in an area referred to as the Bowman community in southern Cottonwood.

The Tehama County Board of Supervisors does not have objections to handing the land over, but transferring property is not that simple.

"The park was acquired by the county from the landowners, and the way the state's law is written is that once a property is acquired and is designated as a park, it stays as a park unless there is special legislature changing that designation," Goodwin said.

One downside to the change in ownership, at least for nearby residents, is that they'll no longer be able to visit the playground during school hours.

Officials say that the nearest playground in the county is in Red Bluff.

"During school hours, we understand that there should be some restrictions, because of course the children at the school are using the playground, using the facilities, and it could cause potential security problems if there were outsiders intermingling with the school children during that time," Goodwin said.

Tehama County residents will get a chance to weigh in at an upcoming community meeting.

In the meantime, the county's next step is to enter a five-year joint use agreement with the Evergreen Union School District, so they could at least adopt formal public use hours for the park.


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