2005-05-20 / Top News

Public Input Sought on Park Funding

Meeting is May 27 at Island House

State Representative Fran Amos has scheduled a town hall-style meeting on the $1.5 million funding cut proposed for Mackinac State Historic Parks Friday, May 27, the same day the Mackinac Island State Park Commission meets. Both meetings will be on the Island, the Amos budget cut meeting at 10 a.m. at Island House, the Commission meeting at 1:30 p.m. in its boardroom at Fort Mackinac.

The Island House is the Island’s oldest operating hotel and is leased from the park commission.

Rep. Amos, a Republican from Waterford, chairs the House Appropriations Subcommittee on History, Arts, and Libraries, which is deliberating the budget cut proposed in February by Governor Jennifer Granholm, a Democrat.

“The entire state is proud of Mackinac Island and the wonderful historic attraction it continues to be,” Ms. Amos said in her announcement of the town hall meeting. “I think it is important to hear from those directly involved how these proposed cuts could impact the historic landmarks, businesses, tourism, and residents. I invite everyone to attend and express their opinion.”

Mackinac State Historic Parks Director Phil Porter testified before the House subcommittee earlier this spring.

The Senate Subcommittee for History, Arts, and Libraries already has recommended the state’s general fund allocation for the park be continued. The final state budget is not expected to be adopted until just before it goes into effect on October 1.

Mackinac State Historic Parks operates on a $5.7 million budget, $1.49 of it appropriated by the state from its general fund and the rest from admission and sales revenues and from grants. The Mackinac Island State Park Commission administers the agency, which includes Fort Mackinac and the Mackinac Island State Park on the Island, and Colonial Michilimackinac and Historic Mill Creek on the mainland.

The walls of Fort Mackinac, built by British soldiers during the American Revolution, are the oldest standing structure in Michigan.

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