Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed the state budget with an additional $6.2 million in cuts to state parks, putting an estimated 100 state parks in danger of closure.
“The governor’s decision to nearly double the cuts to state parks already approved by the Legislature is deeply disappointing and will likely mean park closures in Santa Cruz County,” Bonnie Hawley, director of Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, said in a statement.
No decision has been made by the state park system as to which parks will close.
The $6.2 million funding reduction came after the Legislature voted to cut $8 million from the parks budget, which would have resulted in the closure of only 12 percent of California’s 279 state parks.
“It’s frustrating that the governor chose to make these additional cuts, despite the fact our state parks are economic generators for Santa Cruz County and the state,” Hawley said.
The governor’s decision could impact more than 100 parks, including Henry Cowell Redwoods and Big Basin state parks in the San Lorenzo Valley.