Breaking the Backlog: 7 Ideas to Address the National Park Deferred Maintenance Problem

This year, the National Park Service will celebrate its 100-year anniversary. But not all is well in our national parks. The agency will enter its second century with an $11.9 billion backlog in deferred maintenance projects, an amount five times higher than its average annual appropriations from Congress.

In this PERC Public Lands Report, we explore several creative ideas to address the deferred maintenance backlog in our national parks. These proposals are intended to expand the range of options for policymakers and park managers to consider as the nation turns its attention towards national parks in 2016. In particular, these reforms would enable parks to become more self-sufficient and less reliant on Congress for annual appropriations.

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