U.S. Department of the InteriorDOI News Header
Office of the Secretary
February 6, 2007
Rich Weideman 415-561-4730 (GGNRA)
Joan Moody (DOI) 202-208-3280

Deputy Secretary Lynn Scarlett to Showcase the “National Park Centennial Challenge” and the President’s 2008 proposed budget

California’s twenty-five National Park System units will receive more than any other state from the President’s 2008 proposed budget allocation for the parks. The State’s national parks will receive a total of $141.3 million dollars. California is fortunate to have some of the most expansive national parks at 8.4 million acres and some of the most heavily visited sites, with an estimated 33.3 million visitors.

Deputy Secretary Scarlett will provide the overview of highlights, detailing key priorities and major initiatives in the 2008 proposed budget. The National Park Centennial Challenge will engage all Americans in preserving our heritage, reconnect people with their parks, with a special emphasis on linking children to nature, history and park resources through philanthropy and partnerships, and build capacity for critical park operations while sustaining them over the next century.

The President’s Centennial Initiative has two prominent features. The first provides $100 million a year over and above normal National Park Service budgets for park operations – those items necessary to keep parks, campgrounds and visitor centers open, in good repair, and appropriately staffed with park rangers. The second feature introduces a Presidential Challenge to spur private philanthropy with a match of public money, dollar-for-dollar up to $100 million a year for 10 years. These funds would be used to preserve, restore, and rebuild signature sites and create Centennial park programs to connect with communities.

The Deputy Secretary will be available for questions immediately following her final remarks.

WHO: Deputy Secretary of Interior, Lynn Scarlett
WHAT: Media Opportunity on National Park Service Centennial Challenge
WHEN: Thursday, February 8, 2007 10:30am PST.
WHERE: Upper Fort Mason Officer’s Club; enter Bay and Franklin Streets, San Francisco, CA 94123

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