Proposed budget cuts raise concerns at Glacier National Park - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Proposed budget cuts raise concerns at Glacier National Park

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(MTN News photo) (MTN News photo)

Glacier National Park stands to lose $1 million from its budget if President Trump’s new spending plan is passed. It’s a move that one former park superintendent says could drive people away from the Crown of the Continent.

Former Glacier National Park head Chas Cartwright joined Montana Senator Jon Tester on a phone conference on Tuesday to talk about the impacts the new White House budget will have on the state’s public lands and our land and water conservation programs.

Cartwright says the cuts facing Glacier will drastically reduce the number of seasonal employees it can hire. That means less park maintenance, fewer emergency responders in the park and fewer patrols to stop invasive mussels.

Cartwright says the cuts come as visitation numbers hit new high numbers every summer, and that something’s got to give.

“Simply put, this budget demonstrates the President's lack of understanding and appreciation for the important work done by National Park employees,” Cartwright said. “Here we're talking about basically asking to squeeze blood fro ma turnip and our employees are simply burned out. And that's not a good thing.

Sen. Tester says one of the most alarming aspects of the budget is the drastic cuts to the Land and Water Conservation Fund which would lose more than $280 million.  He calls President Trump’s budget proposal ‘irresponsible’ and hopes to garner bi-partisan support to restore some of the funding to public lands and parks.

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