Friday, September 16, 2011

Arizona’s State Parks & Nonprofits

Arizona nonprofits and local governments are working together to save their parks during the budget difficulties all states are facing, as reported in this article from the Arizona Republic.

An excerpt.

“In the depths of the recession, state budget cuts made it seem almost certain that the gates to many Arizona parks would remain padlocked.

“But local communities and non-profit organizations have banded together to keep 14 of the state's most financially vulnerable parks open by providing more than $820,000 to the cash-strapped Arizona State Parks agency.

“For example, the Friends of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park and the towns of Payson and Star Valley are helping provide $35,000 in funding to the namesake park in Gila County.

“Through a contract with Santa Cruz County, the Tubac Historical Society is helping keep Tubac Presidio State Historic Park's doors open by providing both funding and operational support.

“Red Rock State Park in Sedona is being aided by Yavapai County and the Benefactors of Red Rock State Park.

“All but one of the state's other 13 parks remain open, albeit seasonally in some cases, because they take in enough revenue to stay in the black and fund their own operations.

“Local authorities and non-profits say they decided to cast a financial lifeline to the more vulnerable parks because they recognize their value - their rich history, intense beauty and, perhaps most importantly, their economic impact.

“Today, less than two years after major closures seemed certain, 26 of Arizona's 27 parks are open, although many have abbreviated schedules.”