Since federal budget sequestration took effect, there have been several reports that the National Park Service is planning to close campgrounds and have parks open fewer hours per day because of the across-the-board budget cuts. But now I hear that the NPS has announced the designation of 13 new national landmarks.
Some members of Congress have suggested that these new NPS designations be delayed or abandoned. NPS officials responded that they do not have the authority to take those funds and use them to pay employees to staff national parks at previous levels.
While the statement that funds cannot be transferred between an agency’s accounts is true, this still seems designed to hurt ordinary Americans while less obvious spending continues. Acquiring new NPS property should be on hold, much the same as federal agencies cannot hire new employees. How is the NPS going to open these new national landmarks to the public if they do not have adequate staff?
This is another example showing that even when government agencies are forced to cut spending, it is difficult to get the federal bureaucracy to act responsibly.