Zion visit to draw attention to $12B national park backlog

FILE - Summer heat has always been part of the Zion National Park experience, but the National Park Service says the impact of climate change is being felt around the park system and is taking steps to deal with its effects on wildlife and park visitors. Photo courtesy National Park Service.

ZION NATIONAL PARK, Utah (AP) — Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will be at Zion National Park to draw attention to a maintenance backlog at national parks.

The Southern Utah park known for striking red-rock vistas estimates its backlog at $65 million.

Also on hand Monday to call for Congressional action on the problem will be Republican U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop, who chairs the powerful House National Resources Committee, and his fellow GOP Congressmen Chris Stewart and John Curtis.

The National Park Service estimates its total bill for overdue projects across the country at nearly $12 billion.

A bill in Congress would establish a fund to reduce the backlog using money the government gets from energy development. The bipartisan bill has dozens of co-sponsors.

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