Saturday, February 19, 2011

Florida Civil War sites on state chopping block

Times are tough all around and yet governments continue to make bad decisions. Please read Dale Cox's excellent report on what the state of Florida is considering.

State park closings should be looked at VERY closely before enacting them. The $6.5 million in estimated savings could come at the expense of 53 state owned parks used by families, seniors, tourists, and more. Dale properly points out the economic loss that will be felt by localities that could lose these parks. Free or low cost entertainment during what for many are hard times? Forget it!

With the current administration in Florida is the thought of selling off properties all that far fetched? Or better yet maybe they will sell naming rights like state parks are a sports stadium. I can see it now...Welcome to the Pepsi Fort Mose Historic State Park. Or better yet thanks for visiting The Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park presented by Kmart.

For those of us with an interest in the Civil War please note that both the Olustee Battlefield and Natural Bridge Battlefield are on the list of possible closings. The Civil War Trust recently helped raise funds for the Natural Bridge site. The leading battlefield preservation organization in the country helps you save precious lands and then you close them off.  That makes perfect sense to somebody I suppose.

Tough times mean tough choices but I truly believe this a wrong way to go about things. Hopefully our legislators will see past very short term and small savings to see the value to the state in keeping these assets available. There are plenty of other ways to save money. Cutting state parks is not the answer.

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