Budget shutdown shutters Bay Area parks, tourist attractions
Jan 23 2018 by Lorena Waters
This includes opposition from the congressmember representing Yosemite, Tom McClintock, who personally expressed disapproval of this plan to Interior Secretary Zinke, noting that it would impact both visitation to public lands and the commerce it brings to surrounding communities. Congress still has until the end of Friday to fund the government, but Republicans, who the majority of people blame, again, for Congress's inability to keep the lights on, are trying to temper the backlash by keeping the national parksopen.
A group of WWII veterans outside the National WWII Memorial in Washington.
On Sunday, the shutdown blame game continued on Capitol Hill, but this time, tourists freely strolled outside.
At Valley Forge National Historic Park in King of Prussia, a message says that all park buildings, including the visitor center and all rest rooms, are closed. "We'll stay as accessible as possible, but if it snows we aren't authorized to plow the Park Loop Road or parking lots". Other tours and services may be available; check with providers of these tours for the latest information.
Hiking: Hiking trails normally opened at this time will remain open. Local economic considerations were such a big factor during the 2013 government closure that five governors ultimately agreed to pick up the tab for reopening at least a dozen national parks. Those buildings will be closed. Point Park will remain closed to the public until the government shutdown is over. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke is reportedly working on a plan to do so, despite the fact that almost all his staff will be furloughed.
The popular panda cameras at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington will be turned off, according to a statement from the Smithsonian Institution. Please be reminded that due to environmental, public safety, or other unknown factors, visitor services may be diminished or additional areas may be closed. Swartout estimates that 36 of Rainier's 110 winter employees are working during the shutdown.
Although the parks will remain open, services will be limited. Depending on how long the shutdown lasts, parks that are open today might be forced to close if snow falls and roads become impassable, because the park workers who normally clear roads are furloughed. Outhouses (typically in the back country) will remain open.
Hotels and restaurants operated by Yosemite concessionaire Aramark will remain open, and shuttle busses are running.
Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area: All park facilities (restrooms, visitor centers, etc.) are closed, while visitors will still have access to be in the recreation areas and use trails and fish on the area's waterway.
Some of the boat services furloughed employees, and the government had to refund thousands of tickets.
Still, Zinke reigned in his enthusiasm to emphasize the hardship his employees might face if the shutdown continues.