Chapter 13.40


13.40.010    Short title.

13.40.020    Policy statement.

13.40.030    Purpose.

13.40.040    Director – Powers and duties.

13.40.050    Parks and recreation commission – Powers and duties.

13.40.060    Program criteria.

13.40.010 SHORT TITLE.

This chapter shall be known as the “adopt-a-park ordinance of the city of Santa Cruz.”

(Ord. 2017-14 (part), 2017).


The parks and recreation department welcomes individuals, groups and organizations to assist in the general care and maintenance of park facilities, park amenities, neighborhood parks, community parks, open spaces and beaches in the city of Santa Cruz.

(Ord. 2017-14 (part), 2017).

13.40.030 PURPOSE.

To create a program that allows community groups, schools, organizations and individuals to partner with the parks and recreation department on the installation and/or maintenance of parks, park amenities, landscaping and facilities at city parks or areas of responsibility by the parks and recreation department.

(Ord. 2017-14 (part), 2017).


The director of parks and recreation department, or designee, shall be responsible for administering and enforcing this chapter. The director of the parks and recreation department shall have the following powers and duties in addition to those created elsewhere within this chapter:

(1)    Enter into park adoption agreements pursuant to Section 13.40.060;

(2)    Provide orientation and training of volunteers including the certification of use on special equipment and safety practices;

(3)    Assign staff liaisons to coordinate large scale projects;

(4)    Present applications for review by the parks and recreation commission;

(5)    Establish a list of priorities and areas of critical need;

(6)    Evaluate the work of volunteers and asses the criteria of meeting the park adoption agreement as set forth in Section 13.40.060;

(7)    Any action taken by the director pursuant to this section or any other section of this code is discretionary. Neither this section nor any other section of this code shall be construed as creating a duty or obligation on behalf of the city. The city shall not incur any liability to the candidates, volunteers, donors or public arising out of its alleged failure to maintain parkways or facilities.

(Ord. 2017-14 (part), 2017).


The parks and recreation commission shall have the following powers and duties:

(1)    Review applications and hear staff recommendations concerning park adoptions;

(2)    Determine if the parks and recreation department should enter into a park adoption agreement with the park “adopter.”

(Ord. 2017-14 (part), 2017).


The parks and recreation department shall be responsible for implementing this program and for publishing documents related to park adoptions to include:

(1)    Processing initial applications;

(2)    Maintaining a list of adopted spaces;

(3)    Issuing park adoption agreements to adopters after review and acceptance by the parks and recreation commission;

(4)    Volunteers.

a.    All volunteers must complete any additional forms as set by CityServe, the volunteer liaison or human resources.

b.    Work completed by volunteers will be evaluated by parks and recreation department staff.

(5)    Donors.

a.    Individuals, groups or organizations wishing to donate money or materials in-lieu of committing to volunteer hours will also be considered for park adoption status.

b.    An hours-worked-to-donation equivalency shall be established by the director and will be made available through publication. See Section 13.40.040.

(6)    Recognition.

a.    Volunteers and donors will be formally recognized by CityServe.

b.    Successful completion of target volunteer hours or target donation(s) shall trigger park adopted status as assigned by tiers published by the department and as established by the director.

(7)    Designated Status.

a.    Park designated status of “adopted” shall be assigned after candidate successfully completes their program targets as assigned.

b.    A sign recognizing the adopter will be placed in the designated park or facility in recognition of the park adoption.

(8)    Program conditions and operations shall be established by the director and shall be published via departmental administrative procedure order (APO).

(Ord. 2017-14 (part), 2017).