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The city is considering forming a park and recreation district to maintain and operation city parks and facilities.

Itemizer-Observer

DALLAS — The Dallas City Council approved establishing a formation committee to further look into the creation of a parks and recreation district at its meeting Monday evening.

The new district potentially could own and operate the city’s parks, and even build a new sport complex within the new district.

The council considered establishing the committee after receiving a recommendation to do so from its Buildings and Grounds Committee, a subcommittee of the city council that includes council members.

The committee met and made the recommendation at its July 26 meeting.

“They have been considering for the past several months … different options to help the general fund become a little bit more sustainable,” said City Manager Brian Latta. “One of the options that rose to the top was the creation of a parks and recreation district.”

The recommendation was to create a formation committee, which would determine the boundaries of a proposed district, organizational structure, and rules and law pertaining to the creation of the district.

A parks and recreation district would be a new taxing district, with its own governing body that is not affiliated with the city. It would require approval of voters with the boundaries of the proposed district.

“The district could potentially own, operate and maintain a portion or up to all of our park assets,” Latta said. “The committee also discussed the creation of a new sports complex on land the city of Dallas currently owns.”

If built, the complex would be located off of Orrs Corner Road.

Latta said the committee could take up to a year to complete its work, after which, the council would decide to put the proposal before voters.

The council approved forming the committee on a unanimous vote.

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