How Should We Manage Spring Lake and Purgatory?
We need your help. As a member of SMGA you understand the issues better than most so we are asking you to participate in a public input process next Wednesday, February 15th.
Here is information from the city press release about the development of a land management plan:
The San Marcos Parks and Recreation Department will host an open house at the San Marcos Nature Center, 430 Riverside Drive (next to Tourist Info Center on the access road of IH – 35 south) on Wednesday, Feb. 15 from 5 – 6:30 p.m. to receive comments from the public on its land management plan for the Spring Lake and Purgatory Creek Natural Areas….The city of San Marcos has started developing a land management plan for Spring Lake and Purgatory Creek natural areas that will address “…water quality and quantity, wildlife, plants, fire prevention, and recreation.”
Please attend if you possibly can and or take by some written comments. If you can’t make it at that time you can also submit comments through email at [email protected]. For more information, call Melani Howard at 393.8448.
|Rubyspot #8 by Scott Mitchell, Naturescapes Photo Contest|
The question in the title is fundamental to the mission of our Stewardship Committee. Watershed for recharge and the river, habitat for species on the verge of extinction, flood control, health, recreation and tourism are all good motives for wanting to keep these beautiful places healthy. There are issues of proximity to neighborhoods such as fencing and fire control, access opportunity and limits, invasive species and how we can restore the appropriate flora and fauna. What exactly does a healthy natural area look like and what can we do to ‘improve’ the ecosystems while allowing visitors to experience them without harm?
As president of SMGA and as an active member of the trail crew it is clear to me that not only is a land management plan, also known as a stewardship plan, long overdue but the time has come for the city to employ someone who is dedicated to and trained as an ecologist, understands recreation and economic pressures and can organize and lead volunteer efforts. The Parks and Recreation Department is doing the best they can given their limited resources however those who are tasked with caring for these places must divide their time between many other functions. With just a little more support from the public by way of the city budget they could leverage a tremendous amount of support from volunteers and the public and realize the ecologic and economic benefits. These places need a long term effort to restore the soil, ground cover, woody vegetation and animal species that support Nature’s many services given back to our community. We need your voice to make this happen.
There have been many calls for public participation lately – please give this one some special consideration…
– Todd O. Derkacz, SMGA Board President