AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Supporter of Texas state parks says the Legislature is short-changing the system by $12 million in its latest budget proposal.
The "Keep Texas Parks Open" campaign asked lawmakers on Wednesday to reconsider the amount of money they allotted for state parks, or see seven of them close down.
The group complains that lawmakers are diverting funds away from parks and using them for other purposes. The Legislature created the Sporting Good Tax in 1993 to provide a secure source of funds for the Texas parks system.
The Parks and Wildlife Department said it needed an $18.9 million increase in state funding, but the draft budget proposal released in the Senate only increased parks spending by $6.9 million. Parks advocates note the Sporting Good Tax will grow by $18 million.