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Valles Caldera National Preserve has just issued its second State of the Preserve report, and the results are promising. Visitation has quadrupled since the 2007 report, increasing from 24,000 in 2007 to more than 110,000 in 2012, and staff has made major strides in moving from an interim to a comprehensive management plan.
Executive Director Dennis Trujillo highlighted how much progress has been made toward reaching goals set out in the 2000 Valles Caldera Preservation Act.
“We have either met, exceeded or are making great strides toward meeting all goals stipulated in the enabling legislation, including financial self-sufficiency,” Trujillo said.
The VCPA stipulates that the park must be self-sufficient by 2015 or convert to national forest land. The report puts cost recovery at nearly 29 percent of annual appropriations and almost 100 percent for public programs.
Fifty percent of ecological restoration costs are recovered by the Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration Program funded by Congress. Partnerships with a variety of organizations and universities provide most of the additional funding needed for restoration programs.
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