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The California Department of Parks and Recreation announced this morning it is planning to close "up to" 70 of its 278 parks, including Palomar Mountain and Salton Sea state recreation area, due to budget cuts.

“We regret closing any park,” said Ruth Coleman, director of California State Parks, in a written statement, “but with the proposed budget reductions over the next two years, we can no longer afford to operate all parks within the system.”

A Brown administration official attempted to use the move as political leverage in the ongoing budget battle with GOP legislators:

“These cuts are unfortunate, but the state’s current budget crisis demands that tough decisions be made,” said Resources Secretary John Laird in the statement. “Hopefully, Republicans in the legislature will agree to allow California voters to decide whether we extend currently existing taxes or make deeper cuts to our parks.”

A final list of closures must be signed off on by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Here is today's release:

http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/2011ParkClosures_attachments20110513.pdf

Palomar's website is here:

http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=637

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Comments

Visduh May 13, 2011 @ 4:22 p.m.

Isn't it amazing how this administration can turn something like this on its head? Now, it is not the Dem governor and his minions that will close the park, it's the GOP. Clever, clever! The cost of keeping those parks open is a tiny fraction of the state budget, far less than 1%. But it is something that the taxpayers will often notice, when they cannot access their favorite park. How about cutting something that only affects the "taxtakers", those who pay little or no state tax yet benefit greatly from state-provided benefits?

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