For release: March 9, 2023
Contact: Emily Thompson, Em************@pr********.org
Coalition Statement on President Biden’s FY 2024 Budget
Today, President Biden released his budget proposal for fiscal year 2024. The proposal calls for $3.8 billion to the National Park Service (NPS) budget, an increase from FY 2023. If enacted, this funding would help to address the loss of operational capacity at parks and program offices throughout the National Park System, in addition to providing increased funding for the NPS maintenance backlog and the critical protection of natural and cultural resources.
Mike Murray, Chair of the Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks, issued the following statement regarding the proposed budget:
“We thank President Biden for this proposed budget, which includes an increase in funding for the National Park Service.
For years, our national parks have grappled with inadequate operating budgets and staff reductions while trying to manage dramatically increasing visitation. This budget would help to address the safety concerns and degraded visitor experiences that are a direct result of parks being overcrowded, understaffed, and underfunded.
The President’s budget includes an increase of $266.3 million in funding for park operations and their support services. As the appropriations process moves forward, the Coalition strongly urges Congress to focus on enhancing and building operational capacity at national parks. The NPS also still needs funding to ensure that fixed costs are covered, and staff positions lost over the past decade are restored at parks and program offices.
Hiring additional staff, particularly at national parks that are experiencing increased visitation, will not only help safeguard the safety of visitors and improve the visitor experience, it will better ensure the protection of our irreplaceable natural, cultural, and historic resources. Improving the operational capacity of the NPS will also help to address the chronically low level of employee morale that plagues the agency due in part to inadequate funding and staffing.
We expect this will be another busy year for our national parks. We thank President Biden for this proposed budget and we urge Congress to move swiftly to provide this much needed funding.”
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The Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks represents over 2,300 current, former, and retired employees and volunteers of the National Park Service, with over 45,000 collective years of stewardship of America’s most precious natural and cultural resources. Recognized as the Voices of Experience, the Coalition educates, speaks, and acts for the preservation and protection of the National Park System, and mission-related programs of the National Park Service. More information can be found at https://protectnps.org