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Thread: F&G at Breaking Point for Rescue Funding

  1. #31
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    I am unsure if the state has the right to charge parking fees on parking lots paid for with federal assistance. It may be state owned land but in the case of the Franconia Parkway that was funded with a big chunk of federal dollars and expect that the existing lots have to be free. Note that there are voluntary donations boxes on both sides of the highway at Lafayette place but expect they collect more trash than money. That does beg the question is that Lafayette campground was there prior to the parkway, could the state elect to bulldoze the sites and put in a paid parking lot? Same thing or the Tram lots. I am unsure the funding sources for some of other high profile state lots like Appalachia or Arethusa or possibly the Pinkham Notch overflow lots that are all on state highway land. I am unsure of the status of the actual Pinkham Notch lot, it was the original state highway but AMC spent considerable dollars upgrading it over the years and did a major investment to reduce run off into the nearby river several years ago so they may have at one point gotten the right of way handed back to them.

    In order for it to work I don't see a paid attendant approach working at the hiker lots so it would require a self parking approach similar to the FS lots. That means a couple of paid state employees to drive the lots and match up the hang tags with the envelopes and a major hassle in processing the tickets and getting paid especially for rentals and out of state plates.

    As an aside I have heard that with short staffing the FS frequently doesnt not match up the hang tags with the envelopes in the tube and just tickets those cars without any hang tags. They can more effectively write more tickets by sweeping the lots more often than spending the time to actually match up the tags. I wouldn't be surprised if some folks just rip the hang tag off and hang it on the windshield and throw the envelope away.

  2. #32
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    The director of Fish and Game was on the NHPR Exchange yesterday http://www.nhpr.org/post/funding-hun...g-nh-fish-game. The show diverged a bit about the financial challenges the department faces but the director did comment that hiker S&R costs are a high profile issue but not the major reason the department is in financial trouble. He didn't go into what were directly but he did indicate that a lot of the money the department takes in is pass through dedicated dollars that are available to the general budget. An example is OHRV registrations, they run the registrations but Bureau of trails gets 70% of the fee. The remaining 30% goes to his department yet F&G is expected to manage the activity. He also noted that the major revenue is still snowmachine registration instead of ATVs

    There was a call in question about parking fees for hikers, the answer is that F&G doesn't own the land at many of the popular spots, other state departments, all with revenue issues own or control the lands and therefore any revenue would be diluted among multiple departments.

    He definitely didn't state a grand plan for getting out of the budget hole. I expect as a director he has to be careful as to what he says should be done as typically the legislature doesn't like that.

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