Regional Parks receive more than $1 million in funding

July 4, 2012

The Provincial Government is announcing today that Saskatchewan Regional Parks will once again receive a grant for $1.023 million for the 2012-13 fiscal year.

"Our government has shown its commitment to our regional park system by maintaining the same level of funding as last year - the highest amount received by regional parks since the 1990s," Parks, Culture and Sport Minister Kevin Doherty said. "Our regional parks are important to the people of Saskatchewan. They contribute to the economy and are reflective of our communities and the volunteers who operate them."

The funding is for capital upgrades, enabling parks to upgrade their facilities, ensure visitor safety and offer improved services. The Saskatchewan Regional Parks Association distributes the money to member parks for the cost sharing of capital improvements. Grants are available to member parks to a maximum of $25,000 per park and are cost shared to a maximum of 50 per cent of project costs. This in effect doubles the amount being invested into regional parks.

"Saskatchewan Regional Parks have experienced unprecedented growth over the past four years," Saskatchewan Regional Parks Association President John Froese said. "With the increased funding from the Government of Saskatchewan, our parks have been able to invest in new campsites, new washroom facilities, boat launches, playgrounds and more. This in turn allows us to welcome more people and offer a better experience for our visitors."

In 2008, the government committed $2.4 million over four years to Saskatchewan Regional Parks. This commitment was exceeded, with $3.15 million being granted over the four-year period. This was a significant increase over the $75,000 a year regional parks were receiving previously.

The $1.023 million regional parks received this year is the same level of funding that Regional Parks received in 2011-12.

There are 99 regional parks in Saskatchewan, and 74 of them have achieved accreditation. Each regional park that has been accredited has reached a guaranteed minimum standard for facilities and maintenance within their park. Regional parks reflect community pride. Each regional park is developed and operated by volunteers from the local communities.