Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Cash-strapped Park Service mulls corporate sponsorships

Francis, a 41-year veteran of NPS, blamed insufficient funding from Congress. Tight budgets had already forced him to cut staff and visitor services, Francis said. In his eight years as superintendent, the number of permanent maintenance staff tasked with mowing the parkway's roadside grass, maintaining its highway shoulders and cleaning its bathrooms was cut by half, from roughly 80 to 40, he said. "We'll never have enough money to keep the roads in excellent shape like we were accustomed to," Francis said. "I would imagine all of the parks are feeling the pain." Francis is right, according to national park advocates, current and former NPS officials, and government watchdogs. As the Park Service celebrates its 100th anniversary, scarce funding threatens its ability to fulfil its basic mandate of preserving America's iconic scenic, historic and recreational sites for the public's enjoyment. Consider this fact: In 2010, the Park Service had the equivalent of 22,211 full-time employees managing 394 units, including national parks, preserves, recreation areas, historic sites, battlefields and parkways. By last year, that workforce number had been trimmed to 19,539 -- yet the number of park units had risen to 409. Most reductions came from the Park Service's operations account, it said...more

1 comment:

Tick said...

So now Yosemite and all the rest will be full of billboards? "Brought to you by, BP, Exxon and Coca Cola. :)