In 2007, facing many of the same budgetary constraints as other departments within the state, the City of Kokomo Parks and Recreation Department was unable to fund an update to its master plan. The expiration of the plan that year caused the City to be ineligible for federal grant opportunities. To regain eligibility, it was vital that an updated plan be completed and filed with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
The Eppley Institute for Parks and Public Lands partnered with Rundell Ernstberger and Associates (REA) to update the old Parks and Recreation Master Plan. The Eppley Institute conducted a public engagement process that included stakeholder meetings, a public survey, and two public meetings. The Eppley Institute team also provided an organizational and budgetary review, a report on alternative funding opportunities, a benchmarking study, and level of service standards for the master plan.
On January 13, 2009, the Kokomo Parks and Recreation Board of Directors adopted the revised Master Plan, well ahead of the DNR deadline. Due to the process utilized by the Eppley Institute and REA, the plan enjoys broad support from the city administration and throughout the community.