When Does a County Park Become a Municipal Park? An Issue of Equity and Interjurisdictional Responsibilities


  • Bruce E. Wicks
  • Lisa Peterson


Interjurisdictional equity, disproportionate use, taxation, service allocation


This case study examines the issue of interjurisdictional equity for park services between two jurisdictions of different scale and overlapping constituencies. It details the disproportional cost/benefit ratio that "Centerville,'' a small, relatively affluent community in the Midwest, has derived from its nearby county park-a windfall that. has allowed the town to forego its responsibility to fund its own municipal parks and contribute fairly to countywide needs. To avoid the type of imbalance described in this study, the data from the Centerville case suggestthat when planning new parks, administrators and planners must take a long-range perspective with regard to who will be the beneficiaries of this public service, and match those projections with their clientele's needs and ability to pay.





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