What Is Deferred Maintenance?

More than $11 billion of repairs or maintenance on roads, buildings, utility systems, and other structures and facilities across the National Park System has been postponed for more than a year due to budget constraints. Collectively they are known as “deferred maintenance.” Addressing deferred maintenance is a critical focus area of our core mission to preserve parks and provide a world-class visitor experience.

In addition to increased funding for construction and deferred maintenance projects, the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 budget includes a legislative proposal to establish a Public Lands Infrastructure Fund that would help address deferred maintenance needs in the National Park System. With adequate funding and proper investment, deferred maintenance can be reduced to a manageable level.

Status

National Park Service (NPS) deferred maintenance increased by $275 million (about 2.5 percent) in fiscal year 2017 (from October 2016 to September 2017. Deferred maintenance increased because needs exceeded our capacity to address the work.

As of September 30, 2017, deferred maintenance totaled $11.607 billion. It can be broken down into two categories:

  • Paved roads and structures: $5.900 billion
    • Includes bridges, tunnels, paved parking areas, and paved roadways
  • All other facilities: $5.707 billion
    • Includes buildings, housing, campgrounds, trails, waste water systems, water systems, unpaved roads, unpaved parking areas, utility systems, dams, constructed waterways, marinas, aviation systems, railroads, ships, monuments, fortifications, towers, interpretive media, and amphitheaters

Learn more about inventorying and reporting deferred maintenance and download annual reports created since fiscal year 2014.

Last updated: July 30, 2018