[Source: ABC.news.com, Tara Twietmeyer, 2-2-2010] — The lawn at the State Capitol was packed with demonstrators Monday holding signs that read, “Closed parks? Shame on you!” In the midst of major budget cuts nearly 200 people gathered to try and persuade the states lawmakers to find money to keep state parks open. “We understand the Legislature has a tough budget to deal with, but there’s no reason for them to do what they did to parks,” Sandy Bahr, Sierra Club Arizona Chapter said.
Last month, after new budget cuts from the Legislature, the Arizona State Board voted to close 13 state parks by the end of June. Eight others are either already closed, were transferred to outside control or are being kept open through an outside funding source.
Monday, demonstrators said closing even more parks would bring more money problems to rural areas which rely on tourism. They are proposing a bill that would charge Arizonans an annual fee when they register their vehicle, which would allow them into parks for free [Note: To read the full article, click here.] Photos (c) Tye R. Farrell