Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/26/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Lack of public attendance, poor revenue management, high maintenance to blame.

A government oversight agency is recommending that the state transfer control of many beloved state parks to local and private entities who can do a better job of maintaining the properties.

Parks like Fort Tejon, have active living history programs that are threatened with closure because of the state's budget woes.

Parks like Fort Tejon, have active living history programs that are threatened with closure because of the state's budget woes.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/26/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: California, state parks, Ft. Tejon, Hearst Castle, costs, management, funds, Little Hoover Commission, taxes, budget, maintenance


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The nonprofit Little Hoover Commission said on Monday that years of growth and acquisition have left the state with more land than it can manage.

Much of that land has fallen into disuse as looming budget cuts have stalled maintenance and improvements. Poor financial management may also be to blame.

Many people are not paying when they visit parks either, causing the parks to miss out on badly-needed revenues. State Parks such as the Fort Tejon State Historic Park near Lebec, CA, just under an hour's drive north of Los Angeles, often relies on the use of an "iron ranger" to collect fees from visitors.

An iron ranger is a hollow metal tube with a slot where visitors can slip in a fee on the honor system. The end result is many people don't realize they need to pay, or simply choose not to.

Fort Tejon has an active living history program which shares with the public the nature of daily life at the historic fort. The park also hosts Civil War reenactments and other living history events. This could be lost if the park is closed, costing Californians a living treasure.

Some parks have seen drops in visitor attendance numbers as the economy and high gas prices have compelled would-be visitors to make tougher choices about where to spend their money.

The state park system has been rocked in recent months with allegations of poor accounting practices, mismanagement of funds, and the threat of closures for many parks. Just as the state planned to close many parks, some $54 million in money was found on the books, giving the parks, and the public a temporary reprieve.

The Commission suggests the state give up some of its parks because they cost too much to keep open and the alternative of outright closure would prevent the public from enjoying them. Living and historic treasures would be lost, potentially forever.

One prominent example is Hearst Castle along the Central California Coast. The mountaintop mansion once belonged to publishing giant, William Randolph Hearst and is now one of the most beloved state parks. Unfortunately, maintenance costs for the mansion are prohibitively high and despite the fees charged to visitors, they are not keeping pace with those costs.

Many local governments, and private associations would not likely be able to cover the expenses of many of these parks either.

The most likely result is that these parks will either continue to fall into states of disrepair so great they will have to be closed out of concern or public safety.

The only remaining option for some parks may be to transfer them to private ownership, with special conditions to ensure the properties are preserved. However, finding willing buyers could be difficult.

For now, the parks will remain open for another year but that may change within the next two years. If the economic situation in California does not substantially improve, many would-be park goers and volunteers will find only chains-instead of iron rangers and living treasures, at the gates of their beloved parks.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2014
Christmas, hope for humanity:
That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will.
Parents: That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith.



Comments


More U.S.

A journey to the land of the free: Part One -- Beaten and scared young children flee violence and turn to the United States for hope Watch

Image of Many young immigrants have no more fight in them when they decide to cross the border, they're only trying to survive.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Blistered feet and filthy, blood-stained skin is the forlorn image of immigrants preparing to cross the border. With hopeful hearts and anxious minds, immigrants, of all ages, assemble to make the leap into their promise land. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Most ... continue reading


OBAMACARE DOES NOT WORK! Vermont gives up free healthcare plan as too expensive Watch

Image of Vermont's governor announced that a planned universal healthcare program for the state has been cancelled because the massive tax hikes would devastate the state's economy.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Peter Shumlin, the governor of Vermont, announced that he was canceling his longtime dream to create a single-payer health care system for his state. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The announcement came on December 17, citing problems with paying for the Green ... continue reading


The disgusting new fact of American life: More than 46 million Americans on food stamps for 37 straight month Watch

Image of Obama has been in office for about 70 months, and 37 of those months have seen the most amount of Americans on food stamps, ever!

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It is self-evident that President Obama continues to undermine the abilities of the lower class, enforcing government-reliance on those who can least afford it. The number of Americans on food stamps under Obama has continued along its record breaking path, as, ... continue reading


Faith in the United States' race relations hits a strikingly low point after no indictment verdicts Watch

Image of 57 percent of American's say race relations in the United States are bad, according to the latest NBC News/ Wall Street Journal poll.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Those are the words of Martin Luther King, Jr, a man who fought long and hard for a better today. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A land where discrimination no longer prevails is a reality that seems no ... continue reading


The Pope, the Pets, the Paparazzi and the Propaganda Media

Image of Pope Francis pets a dog

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

The passing on of this complete fabrication, as well as the embellishment which accompanied it, were not simply a matter of the secular press failing to comprehend this Pope. In fact, religious news sources, both Catholic and Protestant, jumped in. This all ... continue reading


Why is he so upset? Because of the secret Republican time bomb in the government funding bill Watch

Image of The federal government has funding through the 2015 fiscal year, but Republicans will have many opportunities to fight the president's programs in that time.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Senate has approved a $1.1 trillion spending bill, aimed to fund nearly the whole of the federal government through the 2015 fiscal year, ending weeks of drama in Congress and relieving doubts that the government might be shut down again while Democrats and ... continue reading


You know about the 'Bishop of Bling' but do American clergy have the same problem too? Watch

Image of The Bishop of Bling was sacked after he spent $43 million renovating his home.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis has called for "a Church which is poor and for the poor." However, not every member of the clergy may have read the memo. A number of high-ranking Church officials in the United States live in lavish homes, sometimes bordering on the scandalous. LOS ... continue reading


Water leak leads to discovery of 1795 time capsule - left by Paul Revere! Watch

Image of A worker holds the time capsule left by the revolutionaries.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Paul Revere, the fearless revolutionary who mounted his horse to declare that "The British are coming! The British are coming!" has left an enduring national legacy - in both deed and actions. Excitement is mounting with the discovery of a time capsule left by Revere ... continue reading


The Gender Identity Executive Order of President Obama is a Trojan Horse

Image of Most of us are familiar with the story of the Trojan Horse used by Greek soldiers to take the City of Troy. After a multi-year, unsuccessful effort to take the City, the Greeks pretended to retreat. However, Greek soldiers had left behind a large wooden horse. The Trojans found what they thought were spoils of battle, a large wooden horse. They decided to pull it into the City as a trophy of their victory. Hidden inside were an elite group of soldiers. As soon as the crowds gathered to celebrate the victory, they came out of the horse and destroyed the City from the inside.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

To equate how one engages in sexual activities with a member of the same sex - or whether one has sexual attraction to a member of the same sex - with a properly protected status such as race, creed, gender or national origin, in the enforcement of federal ... continue reading


America's best hope for 2016 is an old face: Republican's need Romney to run Watch

Image of While Mitt Romney has not said he will run for president in 2016, those close to him suggest that he will, and he is confident that he can win.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Republican party is doing a great deal of soul searching ahead of the 2016 presidential election season. It's will be tough finding a candidate that appeals to the small but vocal Tea Party, the aging and reactionary ultraconservatives and the large and ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 18th, 2014 Image

St. Rufus
December 18: Rufus and Zosimus were citizens of Antioch (or perhaps Philippi) ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter