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California scheming

Posted by: Kerri Westenberg under Minnesota Parks, Regional travel Updated: June 20, 2012 - 12:46 PM

 

 

 

California may lead the nation in reducing car emissions, but let's hope it doesn't set a wide precedent in this regard: turning over the day-to-day running of state parks to private companies. The Golden State plans to do just that at six of its state parks, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal, in an unprecedented move designed to keep the beleaguered parks open. The recent windfall from the California-based Facebook's IPO offering notwithstanding, the state's budget is spiraling downward, and its funding for state parks has dropped 20 percent since 2009. By contract, Minnesota's state parks are in growth mode, since the state brought 39,000 acres into the system when it purchased land for Vermilion State Park in 2008. Sure, budget concerns has slowed development there, where only two portions are open to the public. But there are plans, grand plans. I will soon visit the area, and a story about the new park and plans for its development will appear in the Star Tribune Travel section sometime in July. Stay tuned.

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