First Coast National Parks And Monuments Closed Due To Government Shutdown

Dec 26, 2018

Florida’s National Parks are being affected by the partial government shutdown. 

The shutdown, which started last Friday, has left national parks with little-to-no staff. Some like Jacksonville’s Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve are closed.

Timucuan Foundation’s Mark Middlebrook says there’s no way to access how many have been affected by the shutdown.

“There’s a lot of visitors, people who are visiting friends and family in the area, Middlebrook said.  “They use those parks this time of year.”

Middlebrook said Kingsley Plantation, Fort Caroline, and Theodore Roosevelt Preserve in Jacksonville will also be closed for as long as the government is shutdown.  All three are part of the Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve.

“There is a lot of jobs and tourism, economy depend of those jobs and those tourists. If people aren’t coming, they’re not spending money then it’s unfortunate,” he said.

Our News4Jax partner reports the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument in St. Augustine and Fort Matanzas National Monument in St. Johns County are also closed.

Some of the Florida’s national parks like Everglades and Dry Tortoise will remain open, but with reduced staff and services.

The shutdown entered its fifth day Wednesday. It was caused by a budgetary stalemate between President Donald Trump and Congress. Trump is demanding $5 billion for his border wall and Democrats have vowed to block the wall funding. At last report, an end didn’t appear to be in sight.

State and city parks are not affected and remain open.