More than 1800 businesses, organizations, and local officials from every state have signed a letter calling on members of Congress to restore America’s deteriorating national park infrastructure. As the National Park Service (NPS) enters its second century it is facing almost $12 billion in crucial repairs to aging historical structures and thousands of miles of roads and trails, bridges, tunnels, sewers, drainage, visitor centers, and other vital infrastructure across its 400-plus sites.
The letter was delivered on April 4 to Capitol Hill lawmakers who lead House and Senate Committees with jurisdiction over Department of the Interior funding.
National parks in Louisiana account for over $15 million of the repair backlog.
Signatories are calling on Congress to support guaranteed funding to help chip away at the backlog, to implement policy reforms to prevent the NPS backlog from continuing to grow; to approve more Highway Trust Fund money to pay for costly NPS transportation needs; and to provide for more public-private opportunities to address infrastructure repairs at our national parks.
In Louisiana alone, there are nearly 200 letter supporters. Among those who have signed are the Louisiana Travel Promotion Association, New Orleans Chamber of Commerce, Jefferson Chamber of Commerce, Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau, Madison Parish Tourism, Natchitoches Convention and Visitors Bureau, Preservation Resource Center, and Louisiana Landmarks Society.
Resolutions in support of NPS funding have been passed by City of New Orleans, St. Bernard Parish, City of Monroe, City of Leesville, and City of Natchitoches.
To read the whole letter, and see the full list of signers in Louisiana and nationally, click here.