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Author Topic: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up  (Read 7055 times)

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djkimmel

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Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« on: March 08, 2009, 08:47:01 PM »

To Supporters of Sleepy Hollow and all Michigan State Parks:

As many of you know, the Michigan State Park system has been operating on very limited resources for several years. Please take a few moments to review at the following information:

•   Michigan DNR Parks and Recreation Division is self – funded, meaning we receive NO general fund dollars from the State of Michigan budget. Collected fees and grants are the only revenue sources.
•   In order to maintain services, we have had to tap into our two available fund sources- similar to an individual savings account - the Parks Improvement Fund and the Parks Endowment Fund. In the 2010 fiscal year, starting Oct. 1, 2009, one of the fund balances will be depleted entirely, and the second will follow in 2011.
•   Projected deficits in DNR Parks and Recreation Division for 2010 and 2011 are $1.2 million and $5.6 million, respectively.
•   Revenue (camping fees, entry fees, etc) is expected to remain flat at best for those same years.
•   Michigan State Parks, Harbors, and Boat Access Sites host over 22 million visitors on average each year, and have a major positive impact on Michigan’s economy.

There is now an opportunity for the citizens of Michigan to support the State Park system, its intrinsic and economic values, and to provide stable funding for the future.

On Thursday, March 12, a bipartisan supported bill will be introduced to the Michigan Legislature.  The highlights of the bill include:

1.   Replacement of the State Park and Boat Access Site vehicle permits with a $10 fee added to purchase of all Michigan vehicle license plates, when the owner renews their plate.
2.   If passed, the bill allows for ALL Michigan registered vehicles free entry into ANY Michigan State Park, Recreation Area, and Boat Access Site.
3.   The $10 fees will be distributed to support Michigan State Parks, State Forest Campgrounds, and aid local governments by providing additional funding for recreation projects in their communities.
4.   An ‘opt out’ provision is included for those who do not wish to support recreation opportunities, either on the local or state levels.
5.    Despite ‘opting out’, those Michigan citizens who do so will not be denied free entry into any State Park or Boat Access Site.

The bill will be introduced Thursday March 12, at 10:30AM at the Capitol building, Rooms 402 and 403.   I am asking you to show your support for the future of Michigan State Parks and Recreation Areas by attending the introduction of the bill this Thursday.

Many of us believe this to be the best chance for the future viability of our Michigan State Parks.  I ask you attend whether or not you support the provisions of the bill at this time.

Each Park Supervisor has been asked to provide the number of individuals expected to attend the introduction of the bill.  I would appreciate replies by 11:30am, Monday March 9, 2009. (Sorry for the late notice!)

Additional ways to support this important turning point for our park system will be made available to you in the near future.

Thank you for all you have done in the past, and we look forward to your future support, beginning Thursday, March 12.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions.

Tim Machowicz,
Supervisor, Sleepy Hollow State Park
(517) 651-6217
machowit@michigan.gov
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Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.

djkimmel

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2009, 08:50:03 PM »

We need to do something for our State Parks. I actually like the idea that for $10 I can get into any state park for free that year. I pay $24 every year now to get my annual permit.

I just received this so I'm waiting for more specific details to share.
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fiker

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2009, 09:01:41 PM »

The way it reads it's for both the BAS and the State parks. 
Right now I pay $24 for each one for the year.

I was talking to a DNR guy at the Brighton office on Friday.  He claims that there was a citizens committee that researched this, and made the rec to the legislators.  They are of the belief that it will increase revenues for the DNR and keep them going. 

I'm all in favor of it from everything I've read and heard.
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UAWBigDog

Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2009, 11:40:08 AM »

This sounds great.  It costs me $48 a year for both stickers.  Then another $44 for the Metro Park passes for Kensington, Metro Beach, and Erie.  This cuts the expense tremendously or by approximately 25% for two car families.  I own three cars so it will cost me $30 a year.  That is an $14 a year savings for me.  That is almost a 20% savings total for a year of purchasing launch passes.  The best part is this $10 a vehicle goes directly to the parks and boat launches for maintenance.  That would be huge.

BD            ;D
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Durand Dan

Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2009, 01:14:53 PM »

I also have my 2009 State Park Sticker and my DNR Launch sticker already on the truck (Haven't purchased the Metro Parks duo yet). That would be great for the DNR and all our fellow Michiganders if this were to pass.
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motocross269

Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2009, 08:33:09 PM »

I am all for it...But I don't understand the "Opt Out" option....
Basically you can say No yet still get access????  I wish them luck with that...
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djkimmel

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2009, 01:16:51 AM »

I did forget to point out I pay $24 for each - state park annual and public access site annual. I'm wondering about the opt out option too. There's been a lot of work in recent time put into budget planning for various opt out levels including for this issue. I may have some more details within the next few weeks on this.

This particular proposal is patterned after an existing, successful program in Montana. So it might just work. I'll say more once I know more.
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Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.

jgip087

Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2009, 11:17:59 PM »

I hope it goes through but I don't like the opt out option either because why would everyone just not opt out and take the free pass? I think they should put some small sticker on the license plates for people who pay the 10 bucks and they can use the facilities. What will out of state individuals do and where will their money go?
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djkimmel

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2009, 02:00:40 AM »

I hope to have more answers to things like that within the next couple weeks.
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Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.

Durand Dan

Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2009, 02:12:23 PM »

This plan might work. I wonder whether the employees at the Secretary of State will be recommending that customers accept or decline the optional fee. Too many of my tax dollars have gone to support state programs for which I have no use. I will probably opt out of the voluntary fee to make up for years of being overcharged on park fees. It will be nice to see some MDNR revenue coming from the general tax base for a change.

The State of Michigan needs to do a better job of making tourism a bigger priority. Our residents already know about the wonder and variety of our outdoors. Unlike some other shrinking industries, tourism has obvious potential for growing and boosting our economy. We need more dollars flowing into our state, and fewer dollars flowing out of the pockets of resident outdoorsmen. 8)

As far as tourism $'s go. the State of Michigan for the first time has devoted miliion of dollars to the Vacation in Michigan Campaign this year. This money is creating out of state advertising promoting Michigan's great opportunities.
I personally believe the the fee I pay each year for the state parks is a deal and will continue to support the DNR however they realign the budget.
Hopefully your opinion is personal and not affliated with any group you might preside over in a offical capacity

DD
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djkimmel

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2009, 01:28:24 AM »

I do not have a problem with user-pay programs, and I also don't think $48 is that much to pay to use state parks and access sites for an entire year, anymore than I think our fishing and hunting license fees are out of line. They are all a bargain compared to many other entertainments that are nowhere near as much fun as fishing, and often cost as much for one occurence as an entire year of fishing opportunity.

If someone says now that I can do the same thing for $10 instead of $48 I wouldn't pass that up, but I also would not support it to save $38 if I found out the change would be bad for parks and public access since they are both much more important to me than $38.
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Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.

dartag

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2009, 07:02:18 AM »



i gladly buy my stickers.     having to have 2 passes for the metro park is a pain. 

since i live about a 1/4 mile from a DNR launch i was wondering if they would still have an attendant there.  it gets to be a real zoo when it is not attended.
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motocross269

Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2009, 03:19:07 PM »

I have traveled quite a bit around the US and Canada....We are truly blessed with the Hunting, Fishing, ORV use, snowmobiling and camping opportunities here in Michigan..The Ramps could use some care..(more cement ramps) but other than that we have it pretty good...Considering how little Federal Monies for recreation the state of Michigan gets as compared to other states it is amazing the opportunities that we have..

I think it would be great to spread the costs around to everyone that enjoys the opportunities and not just the Sportsmen and ORV users...I am all for it, but I will never complain about costs for a hunting, Fishing license or Ramp Fee...Especially now that "supposedly" there is a lock on Outdoor funding..

Heck I am about ready to Plop down 75 dollars for a Canadian licence, 40 dollars for the Walpole and another 40 dollars to fish in Ohio...Now that hurts...
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djkimmel

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2009, 04:41:18 PM »

I will ask about the attendant question.
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Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.

dartag

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Re: Michigan Bill Important to State Parks Future Coming Up
« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2009, 10:21:53 AM »

anything ever happen with this.   I may be living on a park bench soon
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