Senators urge action on National Park Service maintenance backlog

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FRUITA, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT) -- Congress is working to solve an $11 Billion maintenance backlog gap throughout the National Parks Service system.

"National Parks and Monument[s] are an important part of Colorado's history. Its heritage to our nations shared love of the public lands system," said Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo.

Colorado parks have a $238 million shortfall. At the Colorado National Monument, the deficit is $19.8 million.

"Most of ours is for road projects," said Arlene Jackson, the Monument's chief of interpretation. "They tend to be very expensive and tend to be things you need a lot of money all at once."

Many of these projects were taken care of this year. But like anything, other issues will pop up as the years move on.

"After years of increasing visitation popularity, national park units across the country are showing signs of overuse with which programmatic funding has not kept up," Gardner said.

"Our visitors when they come to our parks they like to spend their time seeing the beauty of this place and our facilities shouldn't stand out to them except in a good way," Jackson said.

According to the bill, the funding would come from existing revenues the government receives from on and offshore energy development.

Here is a list of Colorado’s national parks and their deferred maintenance:

Bent’s Old Fort National Historic Site (BEOL)
-Deferred Maintenance: $1,080,733

Black Canyon Of The Gunnison National Park (BLCA)
-Deferred Maintenance: $6,508,999

Colorado National Monument (COLM)
-Deferred Maintenance: $19,828,269

Curecanti National Recreation Area (CURE)
-Deferred Maintenance: $14,235,808

Dinosaur National Monument (DINO)
-Deferred Maintenance: $27,292,361

Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument (FLFO)
-Deferred Maintenance: $2,596,109

Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve (GRSA)
-Deferred Maintenance: $10,396,934

Hovenweep National Monument (HOVE)
-Deferred Maintenance: $385,800

Mesa Verde National Park (MEVE)
-Deferred Maintenance: $70,749,005

Rocky Mountain National Park (ROMO)
-Deferred Maintenance: $84,234,245

Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site (SAND)
-Deferred Maintenance: $708,907

Yucca House National Monument (YUHO)
-Deferred Maintenance: $149,055

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