The coffee-drinking public spends much, much more on its caffeine surge on an annual basis, per capita, than individual taxpayers do supporting the National Park System.
That's one of the take-aways to be had from a new graphic from the National Parks Conservation Association. The graphic comes as members of Congress work to find agreement on a budget.
NPCA is calling on Congress to end a cycle of fiscal uncertainty by agreeing on a budget deal, ending sequestration cuts, and restoring funding to America’s national parks.
Parks have seen eroding funding for years, including a steady stream of cuts since 2010, according to NPCA calculations, and are now operating at 2002 funding levels, taking into consideration sequestration and other cuts, as well as inflation.
Over the past three years, the budget to operate national parks has been cut by 13 percent, or $315 million in today's dollars, the group says. And further decreases in funding are scheduled to kick in next year as part of sequestration.
“It’s time for Congress to end the mindless sequester budget cuts and prevent a repeat of that horrible mistake,” said Craig Obey, NPCA senior vice president of government affairs. “The Park Service budget represents just one-15th of 1 percent of our federal budget—roughly half of the portion it was 30 years ago. Yet, in October we were all reminded that the $31 billion the parks generate each year is critical for local economies across the country. An investment in national parks is an investment in the financial stability of communities, as well as in the legacy we leave our kids.”