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Eye On Boise

The plan for self-supporting parks…

Here's a link to my full story on the parks budget presented today by state Parks Director Nancy Merrill, which calls for a $5 million cut in state funding next year.  She says Idaho's park system can move toward self-sufficiency by following a new "business plan" she's developed for all the state's parks, which she plans to place before the state Parks Board for approval tomorrow.

Among the ideas: Charging school groups that tour the Cataldo Mission; hiking most parks' fees by 15 to 25 percent; raising moorage fees at Heyburn State Park by 30 percent this year; reopening a shooting range at Farragut State Park and converting a day-use area to overnight camping; aggressively marketing all parks to increase visitation; and closing two parks, Three Island Crossing near Glenns Ferry and Land of the Yankee Fork State Park in central Idaho, for the winter months to save money. "There are some real outside-the-box ideas," Merrill said. You can see the full proposed business plan here.

Eye On Boise

News, happenings and more from the Idaho Legislature and the state capital.