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Contact: Mary Pat Doorley, 440-343-7355 (cell)
Brecksville, Ohio - Effective March 1, 2013, Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP) was required by sequestration to reduce its annual budget by five percent. The park must absorb this reduction in the remaining six months of its fiscal year, which ends September 30. For CVNP, this amounts to a $600,000 reduction in spending.
The park has implemented a variety of actions to meet this mandated reduction. Among the areas of spending reduced or cut are training, overtime, service contracts and supply purchases, fleet vehicles and the hiring of employees. Visitors will notice in particular the impact of 35 fewer seasonal staff going into the summer season, which will affect the level of basic park operations. Among the areas impacted are visitor center hours, education programming, restroom cleaning, trail maintenance, and mowing.
The park had developed a sequester plan in which some restrooms were going to be closed due to a lack of seasonal staff. The park has adjusted the plan and will now open all restrooms, but at a reduced level of cleaning.
"We are working diligently to continue to provide high quality visitor experiences during the required budget cuts," said Stan Austin, superintendent of Cuyahoga Valley National Park. "Like many national parks, we are unable to retain our previous level of staffing and there will be fewer staff positions in the park this year compared to last year. The result is a reduction in the level of service visitors have come to expect. We appreciate everyone's cooperation and continued support in helping to maintain a clean and safe park environment."
CVNP encompasses 33,000 acres along the Cuyahoga River between Cleveland and Akron, Ohio. Managed by the National Park Service, CVNP combines cultural, historical, recreational, and natural activities in one setting. For more information visit www.nps.gov/cuva or call 330-657-2752.