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Press Release

February 19, 2010

Governor's Office: Marissa Shorenstein
518.474.8418
OPRHP: Eileen Larrabee, Dan Keefe
518.486.1868

Statements from Governor David A. Paterson and Commissioner Carol Ash on Parks Budget Cuts

The Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) today put forward a recommended list of closures and service reductions in order to achieve its 2010-11 agency savings target and help address the State's historic fiscal difficulties.

Governor David A. Paterson issued the following statement:

"New York faces an historic fiscal crisis of unprecedented magnitude. It has demanded many difficult but necessary decisions to help ensure the fiscal integrity of our State. The unfortunate reality of closing an $8.2 billion deficit is that there is less money available for many worthy services and programs. In an environment when we have to cut funding to schools, hospitals, nursing homes, and social services, no area of State spending, including parks and historic sites, could be exempt from reductions. We cannot mortgage our State's financial future through further gimmicks or avoidance behavior. Spending cuts, however difficult, are needed in order to put New York on the road to fiscal recovery. Going forward through the budget process, I look forward to a productive dialogue with the Legislature on parks and historic sites, as well as other issues."

OPRHP Commissioner Carol Ash issued the following statement:

"The 2010-11 Executive Budget included reductions to every area of State spending. As such, the Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation has today put forward proposed closures and service reductions to meet its agency savings target. These actions were not recommended lightly, but they are necessary to address our State's extraordinary fiscal difficulties."

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A fact sheet on the proposed closures and service reductions is included below:

The Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) today put forward a list of closures and service reductions in order to achieve its proposed 2010-11 agency savings target and help address the State's historic fiscal difficulties. As part of a comprehensive plan to close an $8.2 billion deficit, the 2010-11 Executive Budget included necessary cost reductions to each executive State agency, as well as cuts to education, health care, social services, and every other area of State spending.

OPRHP's plan includes the closure of 41 parks and 14 historic sites, and service reductions at 23 parks and 1 historic site.

The plan also assumes $4 million in park and historic site fee increases that will be identified at a later date, and the use of $5 million in funds from the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) to finance OPRHP operations. These two actions were part of the 21-day amendments to the Executive Budget and are intended to reduce the number of parks and historic sites subject to closures and service reductions.

Specific recommended closures and service reductions are detailed below:

Long Island

  • Brookhaven State Park (Suffolk)--Close Park
  • Bethpage State Park (Suffolk)--Eliminate Winter Sports; Reduce picnic area and polo field
  • Caleb Smith State Park Preserve (Suffolk)--Close Park
  • Cold Spring Harbor State Park (Suffolk)--Close Park
  • Connetquot River State Park (Suffolk)--Close Weekdays
  • Heckscher State Park (Suffolk)--Close Swimming Pool
  • Jones Beach State Park (Nassau)--Close West Swimming Pool; Eliminate July 4th fireworks
  • Montauk Downs State Park (Suffolk)--Close Swimming Pool
  • Nissequogue River State Park (Suffolk)--Close Park
  • Orient Beach State Park (Suffolk)--Close Park
  • Trail View State Park (Suffolk)--Close Park

New York City Region

  • Bayswater Point State Park (Queens)--Close Park
  • Riverbank State Park (New York)--Reduce Operating Hours; Close Outdoor Swimming Pool; Eliminate Seniors Classes, and Community/Cultural Events

Palisades Region

  • Fort Montgomery Historic Site (Orange)--Close Historic Site
  • Harriman SP– Anthony Wayne (Orange)--Close Park Area
  • Harriman SP – Group Camps (Orange)--Reduce Maintenance
  • High Tor State Park (Rockland)--Close Pool
  • Knox Headquarters Historic Site (Orange)--Close Historic Site
  • New Windsor Cantonment SHS (Orange)-- Close Historic Site
  • Schunnemunk State Park (Orange)-- Close Park
  • Stony Point State Historic Site (Orange)--Close Historic Site
  • Tallman Mountain State Park (Rockland)--Close Pool

Taconic Region

  • Donald J. Trump State Park (Westchester)--Close Park
  • FDR (Roosevelt) State Park (Westchester)--Reduce Swimming Pool Season
  • Hudson Highlands State Park (Putnam)--Close Arden Point Area
  • James Baird State Park (Dutchess)--Reduce Golf Course Season
  • Mills Norrie State Park (Dutchess)--Reduce Golf Course Season
  • Olana State Historic Site (Columbia)--Close 2 Days per Week
  • Philipse Manor Hall Historic Site (Westchester)--Close Historic Site
  • Rockefeller State Park Preserve (Westchester)--Eliminate Interpretive Programs
  • Taconic Outdoor Education Center (Putnam)--Eliminate Interpretive Programs
  • Taconic State Park – Rudd Pond (Dutchess)--Close Rudd Pond Area
  • Wonder Lake State Park (Putnam)--Close Park

Saratoga-Capital Region

  • Bennington Battlefield State Historic Site (Rensselaer)--Close Historic Site
  • Hudson River Islands State Park (Rensselaer)--Close Park
  • John Boyd Thacher State Park (Albany)--Close Park
  • John Brown Farm Historic Site (Essex)--Close Historic Site
  • Johnson Hall State Historic Site (Fulton)--Close Historic Site
  • Max V. Shaul State Park (Schoharie)--Close Park
  • Schodack Island State Park (Rensselaer)--Close Park
  • Schoharie Crossing Historic Site (Montgomery)--Close Historic Site
  • Schuyler Mansion Historic Site (Albany)--Close Historic Site

Central Region

  • Chittenango Falls State Park (Madison)--Close Park
  • Clark Reservation State Park (Onondaga)--Close Park
  • Fort Ontario State Historic Site (Oswego)--Close Historic Site
  • Helen McNitt State Park (Madison)--Close Park
  • Herkimer Home Historic Site (Herkimer)--Close Historic Site
  • Hunts Pond State Park (Chenango)--Close Park
  • Oquaga Creek State Park (Broome)--Close Park
  • Old Erie Canal State Park (Onondaga)--Close Park
  • Oriskany Battlefield/Steuben SHS (Oneida)--Close Historic Site
  • Pixley Falls State Park (Oneida)--Close Park
  • Robert Riddell State Park (Delaware)--Close Park
  • Selkirk Shores State Park (Oswego)--Close Public Swimming Beach

Finger Lakes Region

  • Beechwood State Park (Wayne)--Close Park
  • Bonavista State Park (Seneca)--Close Park
  • Chimney Bluffs State Park (Wayne)--Close Park
  • Newtown Battlefield State Park (Chemung)--Close Park
  • Springbrook Greens State Park (Cayuga)--Close Park
  • Two Rivers State Park (Tioga)--Close Park
  • Buttermilk Falls State Park (Tompkins)--Close Public Swimming Area
  • Seneca Lake State Park (Seneca)--Close Lake Swimming Beach
  • Stony Brook State Park (Steuben)--Close Public Swimming Area

Thousand Islands Region

  • Canoe Island State Park (Jefferson)--Close Park
  • Cedar Island State Park (Jefferson)--Close Park
  • Eel Weir State Park (St. Lawrence)--Close Park
  • Keewaydin State Park (Jefferson)--Close Park
  • Macomb Reservation State Park (Clinton)--Close Park
  • Mary Island State Park (Jefferson)--Close Park
  • Point Au Roche State Park (Clinton)--Close Park
  • Sackets Harbor State Historic Site (Jefferson)--Close Historic Site

Genesee Region

  • Hamlin Beach State Park (Monroe)--Close Swimming Beach 3 Days per Week
  • Oak Orchard State Marine Park (Orleans)--Close Park
  • Regionwide Multiple Eliminate Camper Recreation Program

Niagara Region

  • Joseph Davis State Park (Niagara)--Close Park
  • Knox Farm State Park (Erie)--Close Park
  • Wilson-Tuscarora State Park (Niagara)--Close Park
  • Woodlawn Beach State Park (Erie)-- Close Park
  • Regionwide--Reduce interpretive programs

Allegany Region

  • Allegany State Park (Cattaraugus)--Close Quaker Area Swim Beach; Close Quaker Cabins Area on December 1st; Eliminate Winter Trails Maintenance; Reduce Recreation Programs
  • Long Point State Park (Chautauqua)--Close Park

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