City agrees to fund services at Solano County's only state rec area

City agrees to fund services at Solano County's only state rec area

Benicia : CA : USA | Jul 21, 2012 at 12:04 AM PDT
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The city of Benicia, Solano County's oldest city, has agreed to assume the cost of providing services to the public at Benicia State Recreation Area.

Benicia's city council voted unanimously Tuesday to pay California more than $15,000 to keep the water running, clean portable toilets and empty trash receptacles at the 700-acre recreation area, one of only two state parks in Solano County.

Benicia has already agreed to maintain the grounds of the county's other state park, the Benicia Capitol State Historic Park, which is on the city's main street.

Councilmembers voted unanimously to fund minimal park operations for one year after negotiations between city and state parks department officials failed to reach a deal to keep the recreation area fully operational for two years.

Local and county officials across California hope the state's severe budget problems, which prompted the 2010 decision to begin closing parks, will be resolved and allow Sacramento to resume operating all 270 parks in the state system.

Benicia SRA, on the city's southwestern shore, is popular spot for hiking and fishing.

The park also contains a portion of the Bay Trail.

The area played a major role in city history, as it was purchased by Benicia pioneer Patrick Dillon from Mexican Gen. Mariano Vallejo in the years immediately preceeding California statehood.

Benicia Capitol State Historic Park recalls the 13 months in 1853 and 1854 that the city was California's capital.

The state legislature moved to permanently to Sacramento in 1854.

The historic park's dominant feature, the restored Benicia Capitol at 115 West G Street, is the only pre-Sacramento capitol still standing in California.

Benicia was California's third capital after San Jose and Vallejo.

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Benicia SRA
Sign marks the entrance to Benicia State Recreation Area, which has been saved from impending closure -- at least for one year. Nathan Salant photo
Nathan Salant is based in San Francisco, California, United States of America, and is an Anchor on Allvoices.
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