Arizona parks considering layoffs, fee increases

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PHOENIX -- Arizona's state parks system is considering layoffs and other cutbacks to fit budget reductions, along with big increases next spring in park entrance and use fees.

The layoffs would take effect in October if approved by park administrators and other state officials. The staff reductions would be focused on the park system's Phoenix headquarters and not in parks. That's because the Parks Board wants to keep parks open. However, some parks' days and hours of operations would be reduced.

The fee increases would be put out for public hearings for possible implementation next spring, including an annual pass popular in parks along the Colorado River.

The Parks Board will consider the budget-related issues during a meeting Friday in Peoria.

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