Has the budget for campgrounds, and facilities such as Nature Station and Homeplace been effected by costs of land management such as logging? Has spending on these areas increased or decreased over the past 10 years?
The budget for campgrounds and facilities stands independent of the budget for vegetation management, such as timber sale preparation and administration. As a result of that, recreation and facilities funding have not been affected. As with all National Forest’s budget in recreation and facilities, over the past 10 years there has been an overall decline in appropriations. For the Land Between The Lakes, total funding has remain constant due to the Forest’s ability to utilize retained receipts to augment the decreased funding from our appropriation.
There is not a correlation between campground and environmental education funding and land management activities such as logging. The Washington office pre-determines appropriated funding amounts for specific activities, such as recreation and timber management, they then distribute to the regional office which then redistributes to the different National Forests, and this is where we receive our budget. Neither the regional office nor Land Between The Lakes has the ability to borrow from one funding area in order to bolster another.
The Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 timber management budget was $376,000, of which approximately $120,000 supported timber sale activity. The remaining $280,000 provided for activities that included common timber stand exams and the planting of 29,000 short leaf pine trees. The same funding line in FY06 was $110,000 of which $15,000 supported timber sale activity.
The table below shows the difference in funding for our campground and environmental education programs, comparing FY07 and FY15. Total funding has remained constant while the retained revenue spending has been increased to augment the decreased funding from our appropriation.
More information about our budget can be found in one of our “Questions from the Public” articles at https://landbetweenthelakes.us/where-does-the-money-go/.