HikeSierraNevada wrote:Caddis, I think I found your question, but it was in reply to someone else's post, not mine.
"Why should a government shut down necessitate shutting down a private enterprise that actually works?"
This is in regard to closing private campgrounds on National Forest or National Park property. First off, some of the best campground are actually run by government employees, so I disagree with your implication that only private enterprise works. As to your question, I suggest speaking with a Forest Supervisor, Park Superintendent, or a higher level Regional manager to get the best answer to your question. In the mean time, we can all speculate why, and I'll take my shot at it to avoid dodging your question. I'm guessing that all government contractors, including those that run campgrounds on public property, are subject to legal and financial oversight of some sort. We don't just hand over the keys to private contractors and walk away. There's a long history of fraud when that happens, which is why we have government workers removed from the profit motive. It might seem minor for campgrounds compared to a defense contractor or highway construction company, but it takes people at many levels of government to make the private-public system work correctly. We don't see those people working in the background to make things happen, but they're there. Except now, they aren't there.
That's my speculation to answer your question, but again, I recommend asking someone at the correct level of government to explain it. I hope this was neutral enough for everyone.
Not taking sides, but here is a question that hasn't been asked. If Forest Service campgrounds are closed down, won't all ski areas that are on Forest Service land also be closed down? Maybe not so relevant in the first week of October (although I think some ski areas in the Pacific Northwest are supposed to be open very soon), but if we get a 1-2 month extension and then another shutdown, what happens then? Anyone remember what happened back in 1995 when I believe the shutdown was over Christmas and New Year? If the ski areas stayed open back then, I think the private companies running the campgrounds have every right to feel hard done by this time around.