So What if the NPS Needs to Cinch Its Financial Belt?
There's been much outcry and gnashing of teeth in recent weeks about the National Park Service's funding problems. Newspapers throughout the country have either bemoaned the lack of $$$ in editorials or written stories about how their local national parks are suffering.
Well, there's at least one writer out there who thinks all the moaning should stop. Scott Milford, editorial page editor for the Wisconsin State Journal, is all for innovative park management (who isn't?), and is happy just to see the parks' landscape without all the fixin's, such as interpretive programming.
You can read his thoughts here. I don't disagree with everything he says. Closing one relatively seldom-visited visitors center in Rocky Mountain National Park so a more popular center can stay open longer makes good sense.
However, we as a nation can't afford to let our national parks and their many facilities, many of which are historical and speak poignant volumes of our nation's history, shouldn't be allowed to fall further into disrepair, certainly not at a time when we're spending $2.3 million on "animal waste management," $1 million on waterless urinals, $1.7 million on "berry research" in Alaska, and $250,000 for "asparagus technology and production."
Meeting our national parks' needs does not require pushing the nation deeper into debt. It merely requires some prudent spending decisions in Washington, D.C.