Thursday, July 26, 2018

Bipartisan bill tackles national parks’ maintenance backlog

“House Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop and his Democratic counterpart, Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz., on Wednesday introduced legislation to earmark some $5.2 billion over five years to fix aging roads, trails and other basic needs at national parks and wildlife refuges that have been piling up for decades,” Thomas Burr reports for The Salt Lake Tribune.

The parks have an almost $12 billion maintenance backlog because of chronic underfunding of the National Park Service. The House bill and its Senate counterpart aim to repair sewer systems, bridges, paths and other structures at 400 national parks via royalties from gas and oil extracted on public lands. Repairs would also be made at Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management and the Bureau of Indian Education.

“Our parks are national treasures. Let’s start treating them that way,” Bishop said in introducing the legislation, Burr reports.

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