Friday, May 29, 2009

First the State Parks

As long predicted, the State of California is proposing closing the State parks.

Pictured above Mugu Rock from the California Coastal Records Project.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's budget cuts could mean the closing of up to 220 state parks, among them the home of the world's tallest tree and other attractions that draw millions of visitors.
Schwarzenegger this week recommended eliminating $70 million in parks spending through June 30, 2010. An additional $143.4 million would be saved in the following fiscal year by keeping the parks closed.
"State parks draw tourism to California," State Parks Foundation president Elizabeth Goldstein said. "This proposal makes the budget situation worse."
The foundation estimates the state gets a $2.35 return for every dollar it spends on parks.
California spends roughly $400 million a year running 279 state parks and beaches, with roughly a third of the money coming from the state general fund. The rest comes from user fees, which account for slightly more than a quarter of the revenue; bond funds; gasoline taxes; federal money; and other sources.

As you can see from the numbers this isn't about saving money or even collecting more money, this is about punishing recalcitrant taxpayers.

California State Parks.


Mr. Outspoken said...

First let me say I hate trees. They get in the way of my roads. Then let me ask, how much paper could be made out of the world's tallest trees? Might come in handy as they fire up the printing presses.

TJandTheBear said...

I would expect the Democrats to propose this stuff, but Arnie's showing that the unions have him by the gnads, too.

NBD; the more ridiculous this gets the more apparent to voters where the money really is (and why).

Ed S. said...


Hey, here's an idea -- just increase the user fees by 50%. Um, so means it will cost, what, $7.50 to go to a park for the day instead of, what, $5.00?

Oh, but then that means we can't give a GIANT F-U to the citizens of the state. Which is the purpose of the assembly, right?

Peripheral Visionary said...

Ah, the old Washington Monument Ploy! Although this is a bit of a variant on the theme, the main target being the voters rather than the Congress.

This especially cynical little ploy never gets old (particularly since most voters are, sadly, unacquainted with it, despite the fact that it gets put into play every time there's a budget crisis . . . )

H Simpson said...

Just lease the parks to the dope growers.

Need a property mgt company to collect the rent else they take their stash and rent out to someone else.

Budget fixed in no time.


MaxedOutMama said...

Sooner or later the taxpayers are going to figure this out. There is that instrument of revenge known as "the ballot".

The legislature might want to have a talk with the CA Supremes, who just got pounded with it.

Captain Nemo said...

How much softening up will the voters take before someone can suggest re-writing Prop 13 without being lynched.

Let's face it, Prop 13 had some good goals, but it resulted in huge inequalities and much lower property tax revenues. It was a hammer to crack a nut. Why should I pay more property tax on my modest house than Warren Buffett pay on his mansion?

TJandTheBear said...

Arnie just proposed an across-the-board 5% pay cut for non-elected state employees. It's a start.

The park thing really annoys me though; everyone knows CA's parks drive tourism. Can't see them following through on this threat.

Lost Cause said...

Just take the day off, do nothing, and blame everybody else. Call it a Schwarzenegger Holiday.