Legislature: Bill Introduced Proposing Moving New Mexico State Parks To New Mexico Tourism Department


Santa Fe, NM- State Representative’s James Strickler (R-Farmington), and Rebecca Dow (R-Truth or Consequences) have introduced legislation that would move New Mexico State Parks from the Environment and Natural Resources Department to the New Mexico Tourism Department. House Bill 258, would align New Mexico State Parks with the state’s tourism efforts in marketing New Mexico on a larger scale.

“Let’s put our money where our mouth is, our state parks are an incredible marketing source for our state,” said Representative James Strickler (Farmington). “By aligning our state parks with the Tourism department we can focus on promoting them and making them more accessible to New Mexicans and tourists. This is a win-win for everyone involved, and I am sure that with more visibility we will ensure that these parks are well maintained.”

Representative Dow has also been on the forefront, asking Energy and Natural Resources to turn some of their attention to the capital and environmental needs at our state parts. She has urged Governor Lujan Grisham to reopen New Mexico state parks, which have never fully reopened during the pandemic. New Mexico state parks provide recreational and tourism opportunities that directly impact many New Mexico communities. The move to have the Tourism department oversee the state parks system will put more emphasis on marketing New Mexico public lands.

“It is a shame that a year into this crisis, the Governor still has no plan for our state parks, they are sitting empty and some are being overrun with litter and trash,” said House Republican Caucus Chair Rebecca Dow (TorC). “Our state parks give New Mexicans an opportunity to enjoy our public lands, give people an opportunity to get away while social distancing, and gives our families an opportunity to enjoy time together in a safe space outside of their homes. There are so many wonderful New Mexico state parks that provide plenty of space to social distance. It is time to truly open our public lands.”