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Senate passes bill to aid partnership opportunities for state parks


Measure would give parks flexibility in addressing funding needs

Olympia… State parks have always been a valuable resource for the communities they serve. On Wednesday the Senate passed a measure sponsored by Sen. Kirk Pearson that will give the State Parks and Recreation Commission the flexibility it needs to better partner with those communities while providing a new source for much-needed additional revenue.

“Our park system is an incredible resource for Washingtonians, as well as for those who travel from all over the country to visit them,” said Pearson, R-Monroe, who serves as chairman of the Senate Natural Resources and Parks Committee. “I am determined to explore every option we have to make sure our parks remain accessible, properly funded and a vital asset for recreation.

“The goal of this bill is to get more revenue for our state parks and give them yet another tool they can use to meet their core mission.”

Senate Bill 6034, which passed with broad bipartisan support, authorizes the state to solicit assistance from, and enter into agreements with, private organizations and public agencies interested in conservation and environmental interpretations.

Under the bill, the State Parks and Recreation Commission, in consultation with the Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation, may permit commercial advertising on or in state parks lands and buildings, if it does not detract from the integrity of the park’s natural, cultural, historic, and recreational resources and outstanding scenic view sheds, among other safeguards. The bill would require that all agreements reached under the bill include performance measures.

The measure passed 45 to 3 in the Senate and now moves to the House of Representatives.

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