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Revamping California’s Parks Dept.

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Sacramento, CA — Some concerned Californians are joining forces in a push to restore confidence and financial stability in the states parks department. The group includes leaders in business, education and nonprofit agencies; like Monterey Bay Aquarium founding director Julie Packard and Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton.

The Associated Press reports the group will spend the next 18months addressing the problems that led to the state threatening to close 70 of the 280 parks in the systemafter long years of funding shortages. One of those parks slated to close was Railtown 1897 in Jamestown. They will also look into the more recent scandal of the millions of dollar former department leaders had socked away in two separate accounts.

The new group called Parks Forward Commission is privately financed. It will design a blueprint to make the park system financially viable. The AP reports the Secretary of the Department of Natural Resources John Laird says everything is on the table.