Thank you for your Dec. 3 editorial and for Shawn Vestal’s excellent Dec. 7 analysis regarding the dire financial situation of Washington state parks. Having worked closely with state parks managers for almost 20 years, including the author of the report that concluded that parks cannot be self-sustaining, I am also convinced that our parks will close before they will be self-sufficient financially.
We cannot let this happen, and we simply must find a way to fund them at a level where they can be well-maintained and safely developed to meet the ever-increasing demands from the public; staffed, coordinated, and even expanded and improved. Can anyone even begin to imagine what the loss of Mt. Spokane and the Riverside/Centennial Trail state parks would mean to the economic, social and physical health of the Spokane community?
If the state were forced to sell, private enterprise would move in, and that would surely be the end as we know it.
Are we really so averse to taxation that we are willing to turn our backs on one public service after another until private interests control absolutely everything? I sure hope not.