As the Transformation Team approaches its seventeenth month of work, great progress has been made.
For example, the California Department of Parks and Recreation (State Parks) has opened up positions to candidates from broader and more diverse backgrounds so that our workforce more closely represents the diverse demographics of the state. The department has also implemented a more comprehensive district budget allocation process that is synced to the annual budget process with a more detailed tracking of current fiscal year expenditures. This means that districts not only get their budgets on time, but are involved in the allocation process months before the start of the fiscal year.
As we continue to transform State Parks, it is important to remember why the Transformation was needed.
- In July 2013, the Secretary of Natural Resources appointed the Parks Forward Commission (Commission) to assess the unique challenges California’s state parks face and helped identify solutions to solidify the future of the State Parks. The Commission released its final recommendations in the report titled “A New Vision for California State Parks”.
- Guided by the draft Commission report in fall 2014, the administration assembled a Transformation Team (Team). The Team comprised of qualified, experienced and dedicated personnel from State Parks staff, outside entities and professional consultants developed a two-year tactical Transformation Action Plan.
- The action plan set forth four strategic goals for the state park system (see below). Based on these goals, the Team and its committees developed initiatives. Through the Transformation initiatives, State Parks will deliver a stronger, more robust future for the state park system.
- Protect and enhance natural and cultural resources
- Develop excellent management systems
- Maintain high quality operations and public service
- Create meaningful connections and relevancy to people.
Thank you for being part of this process. Collectively all of our efforts will strengthen our mission to protect and preserve California’s state parks which include the most significant cultural, historic and natural resources.