[Source: Camp Verde Bugle] — Arizona State Parks is more money-strapped than ever before under the new operating budget, but if the department is going to rely on supplemental funding from the communities it serves, state parks will be dropping like flies. Payson somehow found the money to help keep Tonto Natural Bridge State Park open on weekends this summer, and there was a similar situation in Yuma. The reality is, most towns next to state parks are not floating in spare cash. You know what they say about getting blood from a turnip.
Arizona State Parks has heightened its call for help beyond your basic volunteers. They want cash. They would especially like funds from local towns. It has a selling job to do in order to winkle money out of penny-pinching municipalities. There has to be viable proof of value to the town. If, for instance, the Town of Camp Verde found some extra coins in its linty pockets and dedicated it to a Fort Verde fund, would there really be a return on its investment? Or would it be a stop-gap measure to allow the park to hang on just a little longer?
Fort Verde is an example of a park that could do with a real concrete partnership with the Town of Camp Verde. Fort Verde has already cut operation hours and staff, and more cuts would come hard. Governmental partnerships are key to financial survival at this stage. [Note: To read the full article, click here]