Bipartisan bill seeks $1.3 billion for deferred maintenance in National Parks

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    RESTON, Va. — America is home to incredible lands, many of which are managed by the National Park Service. But the National Park Service faces nearly $12 billion in deferred maintenance at NPS sites.

    On June 28, a bipartisan group of senators introduced the Restore Our Parks Act (ROPA), legislation which would address the deferred maintenance backlog. The bill would create the National Park Service Legacy Restoration Fund to reduce the backlog by allocating existing revenues the government receives from on- and offshore energy development. The funding would come from 50 percent of all revenues that are not otherwise allocated and deposited into the General Treasury, not to exceed $1.3 billion each year for the next five years. The fund will be used to repair park roads, visitor facilities, water systems, crumbling trails and numerous other park resources.

    The RV Industry Association (RVIA) supports immediate action to address this matter since the RV industry depends on public lands, which host 700 million visits annually.

    RV overnight stays at national parks are declining. Inadequate Park Service campgrounds, water systems and other utilities reduce overnight visitation and enjoyment, as does deteriorating or closed roads, bridges and campgrounds.

    Without swift action, the maintenance backlog will continue to snowball into an even larger problem that will impair the entire outdoor recreation industry. Every dollar invested in the NPS returns $10 to the U.S. economy.

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    John SpringerShannonBob DifleySherry Recent comment authors

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    John Springer
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    John Springer

    This looks like grandstanding to me. There is no money allocated; it’s just if there happens to be some left over they haven’t spent on something else. Ha ha. Of course if they just lease those uranium mines in the Grand Canyon or find coal in Yellowstone, there might be some money. What a shameful sham.

    Shannon
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    Shannon

    So by linking park repair with energy development I fear we end up ceding the argument that our national parks are not the place to drill and mine. I can already hear the Utah delegation demanding more coal and oil leases to pay for Zion trail repair.

    Sherry
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    Sherry

    Bill

    It would be helpful if you could put a link in your article to the bipartisan bill stating the senate bill number and or to the primary sponsor. It would also be nice to know if there is a corresponding bill in the house. Your readership could more easily participate in this decision which effects us directly

    Bob Difley
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    Bob Difley