SD Rostra

Are we really going to save money if we close some of our State Parks?

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinionla/la-ed-parks-california-closing-20120317,0,4470243.story

I’m a lover of our Parks and it’s not because I’ve been a National and County Park Ranger, but because of how I grew up. My parents, teachers, friends and scout leaders helped in nurturing that love of Parks in me. I will also say that some Parks were created because of political pressure and really shouldn’t be in a Park system (this mainly applies to the National Parks).

But my post here is about the closing of some California State Parks. Politicians say it is needed to save money, but is it really? I think we have to look at the bigger picture. How will it impact the communities that somewhat depend on those Parks? Can we justify saving money in the State Park Budget when we lose tax dollars from purchases made in those nearby communities, as well as possible job losses (not state employees, but in community businesses). We also look at the loss when Parks are closed and they are then vandalized.

We need to look at the whole picture when we consider closing Parks. Saving budget dollars is just a small part. We must look at the actual cost in reduced tax revenue, loss in employment, and vandalism, just to name three issues involved in closures.

So as a fiscal conservative, I urge the state to look at the bigger picture and keep our State Parks open.  In the long run, their closure will end up costing us much more.

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