Digital News Report – Rather than closing California State Parks, Senator Sam Blakeslee announced a plan to shift costs and operations to the counties and other local governments. The transfer will only be temporary.
Since the local parks benefit the local community, shifting the cost seems reasonable, according to the senator. “California state parks generate valuable revenue for our local communities,” said Blakeslee. “If the state cannot keep parks open, local stakeholders deserve the chance to work together to protect the jobs, economic activity, and recreational opportunities offered by our local parks.”
The California State University, Sacramento conducted a survey finding that an average visit to the park generates $31.32 spent within a 25 mile radius of the park. Rather than seeing the park close, cities and counties will have the option of taking control of the park for up to five years.
Betty Winholtz, former Morro Bay City Council member thinks this is a good idea. The City of Morro Bay is highly dependent on tourism which includes our State Park visitors.
Senator Blakeslee says the plan could benefit resident of the state. It is estimated that non-residents of California spend $1.66 billion dollars in tourism revenue per year.
By Mark Williams
Image: Sunset SB State Beach