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Ann Arbor Parks & Recreation Millage to Appear on Nov. 5 General Election Ballot

Archived News Release: June 13, 2024 - ​The City of Ann Arbor is known for sprawling natural areas, parks bustling with activity and recreation facilities offering diverse programs and amenities suited for all. Later this year, Ann Arbor voters will decide whether to continue to support the principal funding source for park system capital improvements, repairs and restoration programs as the 20-year Park Maintenance and Capital Improvements Millage is set to appear on the Nov. 5 General Election ballot. Ann Arbor City Council approved the ballot question at their June 3 meeting.

The current, six-year Park Maintenance and Capital Improvements Millage expires this year, and the new millage would continue to sustain the parks system 2025 through 2044.

“Ann Arbor residents have a long history of supporting their city parks and park facilities through millages," said Parks and Recreation Manager Josh Landefeld. “Long-range funding has enabled ongoing maintenance, including for aging facilities." Landefeld noted extending the proposed millage to span over a 20-year timeframe would allow funds to be leveraged for an even more holistic, strategic and long-term approach to planning. Funds would be available for planned projects and would also give staff the ability to more swiftly address unanticipated improvement and repair needs in the parks.  

The new millage would raise, in the first year of the levy, an estimated revenue of $8,519,150, through an annual tax of 1.10 mills on all taxable real and personal property situated within the city. The estimated annual cost to a household in the first year of the millage, based on a mean taxable value of $176,933, is expected to be $195. The current cost to a household for the expiring millage based on a mean taxable value of $176,933 is $190.

Millage-funded projects include major renovations to replace aging amenities, to improve accessibility and Americans with Disabilities Act compliance, and to remain current with recreational trends. Millage funding also invests in keeping the park system safe and protects the structural integrity of buildings, playgrounds, game courts, paths and other park amenities. The city's park maintenance and improvements webpage has documented millage-funded (and other) projects over the past 15 years. Specifically, millage dollars fund:

Maintenance —

  • Natural area preservation

  • General maintenance of parks, courts, playgrounds, equipment, amenities

  • Ongoing trail, path and parking lot maintenance

  • Forestry and horticulture

  • Volunteer outreach

  • Environmental education

  • Recreation facilities

  • Park mechanical systems 

Capital improvement projects for —

  • Community-wide parks

  • Park shelters, playgrounds and structures

  • Historic preservation

  • Neighborhood parks and urban plazas

  • Pathways, trails, boardwalks, Border-to-Border Trail

  • Recreation facilities

  • Recreational dams

  • Major park equipment

  • Park planning

"We, as staff, recognize and appreciate that the ongoing support from the millage has allowed us to provide our community with one of the best park systems in the country — one we can all be proud of and enjoy to its full extent," Landefeld said.

Residents can check voter registration status and register to vote, if needed, through the Michigan Voter Information Center, A voter registration form may also be submitted by mail, email, fax or in person at the Ann Arbor City Clerk's office. Registered voters can enroll in the automatic ballot mailing list to have a ballot mailed to them for upcoming elections as well.

Learn more about the Park Maintenance and Capital Improvements Millage at Questions regarding the millage can be sent to [email protected]. ​

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Media Contact Information

Josh Landefeld
Parks and Recreation Manager
[email protected]

Ann Arbor has 123,851 residents, spans 28.97 square miles and is frequently recognized as a foremost place to live, learn, work, thrive and visit. To keep up with City of Ann Arbor information, subscribe for email updates, and follow the city on Twitter and Facebook. The city's mission is to deliver exceptional services that sustain and enhance a vibrant, safe and diverse community.