Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Please Help State Parks. Boarders.

Arizona parks
Picacho Peak State Park is one of 13 Arizona parks slated for closure by June. (Ross Franklin / Associated Press / January 15, 2005)
From Los Angeles Times,  by Nicole Santa Cruz, January 16, 2010

“Wrestling with a multibillion-dollar budget deficit, Arizona decided Friday to close nearly all of its state parks, including the famed Tombstone Courthouse and Yuma Territorial Prison.

The State Parks Board unanimously voted to close 13 parks by June 3. Eight others had already been closed, and the decision would leave nine open -- but only if the board can raise $3 million this year.
The action represents the largest closure of state parks in the nation, although several other states are considering similar moves.
"It's a dark day for the Arizona state parks system," said Renee Bahl, the system's executive director.  "We have 65,000 acres around the state and the majority of them are closing."
The Arizona parks receive about 2.3 million visitors per year who bring about $266 million into the state, Bahl said.
"It's unfortunate that a short-term recession is having an impact on our future," Bahl said.

Please read and sign the petition: http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/stop-governor-brewer.html
“Arizona isn't the only state struggling to support its parks.
Louisiana and Iowa may close parks due to budget problems. Other states have transferred their parks to local control to save money.”
"This is the time when people need to be getting out and releasing stress."

As for the ones in CA:
”In May, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger proposed closing 220 of California's 278 state parks to help close a multibillion-dollar deficit but backed off after protests.
This month, Schwarzenegger proposed to expand oil drilling off the Santa Barbara coast to provide up to $140 million for state parks in place of state funding.”

“Parks don't cost much - closing them would.”     From SFGate.com:
“The tax expert could cite a case in point from last year. "When fires closed Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park for 10 months, State Parks lost $2 million in revenue from user fees and the Big Sur community reported it lost $40 million in total revenue from the multiplier effect."
Schwarzenegger would likely then survey his vice governors. "All this makes me look like an idiot, to think cutting off State Parks would solve our budget deficit. Why have you advised me to do this?"

You can help stop it here: http://www.calparks.org/takeaction/#Advocacy_Efforts

More on this by Frank Gormlie Of Ocean Beach Rag, CA:
“How do you close a desert, Mr. Governor?”
Have you heard this joke: What happened when the Governor tried to close the desert? The Turkey Vultures went on strike.  … Don’t get it? Read on: http://obrag.org/?p=8262

Please look for a petition regarding your local parks, if they are in danger of closing.  They are our kids inheritance.

Here is a breakdown of how TX State Parks and their surrounding communities fare:
“The economic impact of state parks is wide-ranging. The communities that host state parks benefit directly from salaries paid to park employees and from the spending of tourists who visit the area. Restaurants, retail, hospitality and other businesses benefit from the presence of nearby parks.
Additional benefits come from the positive effect that parks and open spaces tend to have on the value of nearby land. And parks provide the state with revenue from visitor fees, and local governments with increased sales and property tax revenue stemming from parks-related economic activity.”
From: http://www.window.state.tx.us/specialrpt/parks/value.html

It is a lovely day in the 70’s, so I let Bobcat out on her porch, and the tortoise out in my fenced back yard.  “Teacher” wandered around for a bit then tried to dig into some soft soil by the roses.  This area has a little fence to keep the dogs away from the rose’s stickers, but he found a way to get in there.  So I made him a ‘house’ out of the top of a cat litter tray, as it has an archway door opening.  I put some pine needles in there and he dug himself under them.  If he wasn’t going to wander around and eat the grass and dandelions, he might just as well be inside, where I don’t have to worry about him getting out.

 Mindi brought four of her dogs to stay with me for three days.  Puddin’, the Yorkie; Sheba, the little old white Poodle with the collapsed trachea;  Jakey, Sheba’s silver son; and Precious the Dachhund.   I am always with them when I take them out, so I wasn’t worried about them hurting the tortoise.

So it will be lots of little dinners to make today.

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