Meewasin Valley Authority supporters writing MLAs to avoid provincial cuts
Authority lost about half its funding last year
A group of nature-lovers in Saskatoon has started a letter-writing campaign in an attempt to save the Meewasin Valley Authority(MVA) from deeper cuts from the province.
Last year, the provincial government cut a provincial grant to the riverbank conservation group by $409,000, roughly half the group's budget.
The group Stand Up For Meewasin believes the province may cut the organization's funding completely in this year's budget, something that could jeopardize the group's existence.
Spokesperson Candace Savage said public campaigns have helped preserve public funding in the past.
"We know it can be done," said Savage. "The people who went to bat for the libraries last year showed us they will listen."
The MVA has already closed its public interpretive centre due to budget constraints and has reduced hours at the Beaver Creek Conservation Area, located south of the city.
Stand Up For Meewasin is organizing on Facebook and is asking nature lovers to create videos on why they love the riverbank park.
Savage said she hopes enough political pressure can prevent further cuts.
"We know the Sask. Party would really like to retain its seats in Saskatoon. And they lost the last two by-elections (here)," Savage said.
When Premier Scott Moe was asked about funding for the MVA during the Sask. Party leadership race, he said Meewasin was one of few municipal urban parks that received money from the province and that he wanted to focus money on core services like health care and education.
The provincial budget will be released April 10.