Methow Valley voters will decide in April’s special election whether they want to create a new recreation district to maintain and expand recreational opportunities in the valley.

A petition calling for creation of the recreation district was certified by the Okanogan County auditor last week as having enough voter signatures to place the measure on the April 22 ballot, said Fred Wert of Friends of the Recreation District, a citizen group backing the effort.

The ballot measure will also include candidates for five at-large positions on the Recreation District Commission, which will govern the district.

Now that the petition is certified, the county auditor will soon open the filing period for citizens interested in running for election to the district commission, Wert said.

The proposed Methow Valley Recreation District would have the same boundaries as the Methow Valley School District. As a special taxing district, it would have the ability to raise money through a property tax levy to support recreation in the valley.

Backers of the district gathered more than 800 signatures in support of the proposal. They needed about 550 valid signatures to place it before the voters.