Refocus National Park Service Spending on National Parks

  • Potential 10 Year Savings: $157 Million
  • Sponsor: Rep. Tim Huelskamp
  • Legislation: H.R. 3716
  • Status: Introduced

In addition to maintaining nearly 400 national parks, the National Park Service also operates a program to fund preservation efforts for local projects not connected to federal parks. These National Heritage Area Grants have been described by the Park Service as secondary to the primary mission of the Park Service, and the Obama administration has proposed cutting spending on the grants by more than half. The Park Service points out that state and local managers of National Heritage Areas continue to rely heavily on Federal funding, even though the program was not intended as a pathway to long-term Federal funding. The FY 2010 Interior Appropriations bill urged that the Heritage Areas work towards becoming self-sufficient. This proposal would terminate funding to the National Heritage Areas.