Sunday, October 25, 2009

Budget cuts targeting Pennsylvania state parks

TOM VENESKY OUTDOORS - Wilkes Barre Times-Leader
Last week Pennsylvania’s state park system earned a 2009 National Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. The award was announced on Oct. 14 in Utah at the annual meeting of the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration and the National Recreation and Park Association. It recognizes the job that the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources does to attract people to our state parks through a variety of programs that, most importantly, connect them to the outdoors.

There are other factors that went into the award, but nothing means more than simply connecting people with nature. It’s a job that our 117 state parks do well.

From January through July of this year, more than 23.5 million people visited Pennsylvania’s state parks, a 17 percent increase from the same period in 2008.

Annually, the state parks average 35 million visitors. Pretty impressive … for now.

I expect that number to drop in the near future thanks to a state budget that hits DNCR’s Bureau of State Parks with a $9 million, or 15 percent cut.
Full Story...

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