PHOENIX, Ariz. – Gov. Jan Brewer today negotiated an agreement with the U.S. Department of Interior to reopen Grand Canyon National Park using state and local funds amid the ongoing federal government shutdown.
Reopening the Park has been a core focus of the governor since the initial threat of the shutdown 10 days ago.
I’m gratified the Obama administration agreed to reverse its policy and allow Arizona to reopen Grand Canyon, Arizona’s most treasured landmark and a crucial driver of revenue to the state,
With a long weekend in front of us, I am thrilled Grand Canyon will be open and fully operational – not only for our national and global travelers who have long-awaited to experience one of the world’s Seven Natural Wonders, but for the nearby businesses and communities whose livelihood depends on the tourism it attracts. I must especially acknowledge Tusayan Mayor Greg Bryan, who has pledged private and town dollars to see this park reopened. I also thank the Arizona Office of Tourism, Arizona Department of Administration, the Arizona State Treasurer and private businesses for their leadership and contributions to this important effort.
While this deal will buy us some time and bring back lost revenue to the state, I would hope our elected officials in Washington move urgently to negotiate an immediate end to this government standstill.
Arizona is doing what it can to keep the Grand Canyon up and running, but we cannot pay the federal government’s tab for long. That said, I am proud to announce Grand Canyon will be open for business for the Columbus Day weekend.
Under the agreement negotiated by Brewer, the state will pay the National Park Service $651,000, which comes to $93,000 per day to reopen Grand Canyon and fully fund park operations for up to at least seven days using state and other monies. The State of Arizona urges its congressional delegation to secure reimbursement of all state dollars used to reopen Grand Canyon. The state will continue to assess next steps if the federal shutdown has not ended in those seven days.
Submitted by: The Office of Gov. Jan Brewer
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