Dedicated to Sharing the Heritage of Redwood Empire Railroading
Very sad -- Railtown along with 69 other state parks will close July 1, 2012, due to the ongoing budget woes. The complete list is here:
It's not the first time DPR has put Railtown on its "hit list." Visitation counts are how they determine everything budget-wise, and it's done poorly in comparison to a lot of other state parks, much as everyone who loves the place wishes otherwise. The faster society goes in terms of entertainment (or what passes for it) the worse slower places like Railtown do, especially when it's operational costs are pretty high...even though it's pretty dependent on its stalwart volunteers and the CSRM Foundation which heavily underwrites its visitor services and some operations accounts and management.
The sad fact is that CADPR never really wanted to accept Railtown into its fold, at least not from the political side. It was pretty much foisted on State Parks and turned over to CSRM since they were the "train people." If it wasn't for the supremely devoted CSRM it would have closed down already, believe me.
I'd say that severe a series of actions will not likely happen. In the prior two statewide parks closures proposals of years past (when the state budget was in tatters) it was a "hunker down" type of closures, meaning minimal staff as security and then wait and see what happens next.
What's happening right now is "political theatre" -- grandstanding of reactionary policies and budgetary ideas. What's different now, of course, is that the State of California is in effect bankrupt or dangerously close to it. The State is seldom "pro-active" in any event, and the events unfolding now is a classic case of that messy way of dealing with a crisis or multiple crises this widespread.
The Railtown property is on the National Register of Historic Places and the State's equivalent list. In the private business sector that means little, but in government-to-government terms, it means that the State is prevented from taking any action that would physically harm or "de-list" the property as an intact historic place. Besides, CSRM and State Parks has too great a capital investment in the place to be harsh. Nevertheless, CSRM-Sacramento also has too much on its local plate right now to concern itself with adding more equipment and managerial oversight to dissolving Railtown facilities or moving equipment anywhere. I seriously doubt whether DPR has the funds to begin fencing off all the parks it plans to "close."
The news as of last night summarized the story that because summmer -- DPR's "busy season" -- is coming on quickly, most parks will stay open until Labor Day Weekend then those that are on the closure list will lock their gates and visitors' services centers (if they have those facilities) until further notice. Busy season will at least generate a little revenue...not enough to solve the dilemma but enough to temporarily bar the wolf from the door.
I think this all comes down to the old phrase "stay tuned." And keep breathing...
Ah that makes alot of sence thank you!
I seriously doubted they would auction off the equipment, but you never know so I though i'd ask. ..
Thank you again, and I deffinintly will keep breathing...
I hear the parks great and even as a major trainbuff (who is still to young for a drivers permit) I have yet to venture to the park.