Amy Poehler starrer gets early third-season order

NBC bureaucrats approved another year of funding for the “Parks and Recreation” department of Pawnee, Indiana late Friday.

Peacock’s decision to give an early third season order for “Parks and Rec” came as the network looked to lock in cast members’ schedules for the coming year.

The pickup also comes in recognition of the great creative strides “Parks and Rec” took this year. The series opened last spring to mixed reviews, but has since earned raves from crix — many of whom put “Parks and Rec” on their “best of 2009″ lists.

The Thursday comedy pulls relatively low numbers on Thursday — averaging a 2.3 rating and 6 share among adults 18-49 — but NBC execs have voiced strong support for the show.

Pickup reps great news for “Parks and Rec” exec producers Greg Daniels and Mike Schur. “Parks and Rec” had an unusual launch: Daniels and Schur were originally tasked to produce a spinoff to “The Office” — but changed course after snagging Amy Poehler for a show. Then, production was delayed in order to accomodate Poehler’s pregnancy.

“Parks and Rec,” from Universal Media Studios, bowed last April.

“Parks and Rec” stars Poehler as gung-ho small-town bureaucrat Leslie Knope; the show also stars Rashida Jones, Paul Schneider, Aziz Ansari, Chris Pratt, Aubrey Plaza and Nick Offerman as breakfast-loving department head Ron Swanson.

Howard Klein and David Miner exec produce along with Daniels and Schur.

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