Government shutdown stretches into week three
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – As we enter the third week of the partial government shut down, the National Park Service announced they’re going to use entrance fee funds to pay for expanded operations, like cleaning up the parks and restoring access to some areas.
This decision was made after reports of trash on the ground and vandalism at many of the National Parks that have remained open during the shut down.
The gates at the Cabrillo National Monument in San Diego remained closed.
“It’s quiet, it’s peaceful,” said Alan Perry, Resident in San Diego. “You see everything from up here.”
Dozens of cars, joggers and bikers planned a day at the Cabrillo National Monument to take in the fresh air, the rich history and the breathtaking views.
“I wanted to bring my wife and my cousins up, take a look,” said JB Brown, Visitor from Las Vegas. “I hear you can see Mexico from here and all of downtown, so this is the spot to me.”
Those plans changed fast. They had no choice but to turn around.
The signs remain outside. The Cabrillo National Park is still closed, but the National Park Service said Sunday they are going to start using visitor fees to keep the parks safe and to open limited areas for the visitors.
The regulars, like John Roberts who bikes here often, thought his usual route to check out the tide pools was back open.
“I read that some of the parks are open,” said Roberts. “Maybe not like they should be, but I thought this one might be open too so I could do my usual ride which I can’t.”
Car after car stopped at the signs and turned around, leaving many, especially those from out of town, disappointed.
“The monument is closed today, signs down below,” said Patti Santiago, Visitor from Seattle. “We thought we would keep on driving, and see if we can get further in so we could still get some pictures and still get the view but obviously not.”
“I’ve never been here before. I was excited,” said Cheryl Dant, Resident in San Diego. “Maybe I’ll be able to at least walk in there, but nope, they won’t even let us walk in.”
The National Park Service said the funds won’t allow parks to fully reopen and most of the smaller ones will remain closed. There is no word on how many employees will return back to work or which parks will be awarded the additional funds.