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California State Parks Hit By Budget Ax

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Castle Rock State Park (www.parks.ca.gov)

Castle Rock State Park, one of the several Bay Area parks targeted for closure. (www.parks.ca.gov)

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SACRAMENTO (KCBS) – Access to many state parks could be limited starting on Wednesday, as reduced hours and services are expected due to a $14 million budget shortfall.

“In many places, those reductions have started already and we’re in the offseason, so the public probably isn’t going to notice a lot right away,” said California State Parks spokesman Roy Stearns. “Like last year, we had some partial closures and some service reductions. We’re not planning any full park closures at this point.”

KCBS’ Mike Colgan Reports:

Stearns said the cuts are unavoidable following the defeat of Proposition 21, which would have imposed an $18 annual fee per car to benefit parks.

“When it was defeated, it meant that we had to continue working with the same budget that was passed late in September,” said Stearns. “And that budget cut about $14 million out of our budget in a permanent way.”

Stearns said they’re still faced with $1.3 billion in deferred maintenance to fix things like roads and bathrooms.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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