Parks-Leases-Hotels
4:09 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

New Bill Would Make Leasing Of Alabama Lodging, Golf Possible

A map of the state parks and resorts in Alabama.
A map of the state parks and resorts in Alabama.
Credit http://www.alapark.com/ / Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources

A Senate committee has sent a bill to the floor that could allow private operators to lease lodging facilities and golf courses within 12 state parks.


The Senate Finance and Taxation-General Fund Committee approved the bill 8-2 Wednesday.


It would allow the Department of Conservation to generate and control the leases. State parks are supported by visitor fees. While some parks pay for themselves, others lose millions of dollars each year. Supporters say the bill could turn those numbers around.


Director of Alabama State Parks Greg Lein questioned the impact on the 600 park employees. Under the proposed legislation, Lein's department would be able to request proposals, surety bonds and other terms from potential vendors. That could cover employees.


Democratic Sens. Billy Beasley and Bobby Singleton opposed the measure.