I completely disagree with the editorial Merging agencies; Hickenloopers plan is smart government (Herald, March 11). This is merely a ploy to get hunters and fishermen to help pay for the failing State Parks system.
The Division of Wildlife functions just fine with hunting and fishing revenues and the federal matching funds. State Parks, on the other hand, is losing its shirt. What insults me even more is the fact that there are designated state parks really wildlife range that have no value as state parks and are leased to outfitters. The outfitters are allowed to use them as their private hunting grounds closing the public out.
I believe that the federal money is also the result of the hunting and fishing community paying taxes on ammunition and fishing equipment.
We need to close failing state parks and make the users pay what it takes to keep them open. Its obvious that State Parks cant afford any more parks. It has turned down opportunities locally and possible other locations.
Parks are expensive to build, operate and maintain. As for duplication, I am betting that the Division of Natural Resources already provides many administrative services to both agencies. Maybe there are too many administrators in Denver.
Mike Deming, Bayfield