Date of Award:
Master of Science (MS)
Yearly funding for individual national parks is overseen and determined by the House Appropriations and Natural Resources Committees. This process has resulted in the National Park Service being underfunded and facing a $12 billion maintenance backlog. Congress has passed temporary funding to help reduce this backlog but has not indicated a shift in how funding decisions are made to prevent future shortfalls.
This thesis uses statistical analysis to explore how individual members of Congress are impacting funding for national Parks in their states or districts. Often congressional committee’s act on personal incentives to make funding decisions rather than basing their decisions on recommendations by experts. These results have significant implications for the future of national park funding and the role of committees in Congress.
Morrill, Braden T., "The Effect of Congressional Committee Assignments on National Park Annual Operating Budget Appropriations" (2022). All Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 8542.
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