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Parks Prepare For Austerity

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The fate of the federal budget is causing no small amount of concern for the nation’s parks, and among them, Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks.  Currently, the parks are being operated on funds provided under a continuing resolution that will remain in place until March, providing emergency funding until the Congress can come up with a permanent budget.  However, there is talk of federal lawmakers trying to piece together a budget yet before the end of the year which could contain deep cuts for the park service.  On the other hand, if no budget is adopted by March, park funding would trigger automatic cuts in funding.  Spokesperson Jackie Skaggs says just how any of these options would impact Grand Teton, would be pure speculation.  However, she says the subject of spending cuts is not anything new and the park would implement contingency plans in the event a major loss of funds became reality.  Such plans would be crafted so that some level of visitor services in the park could still be possible.  Meanwhile, Skaggs says park managers continue to have hopes that there will be a resolution to the budget question before such a plan would be necessary.

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