When Retired Major General Anthony Jackson took over the parks system about a year ago, the department faced multiple investigations into its mishandling of state funds – and a closure list of 70 parks. The parks haven’t closed – at least not yet – but Jackson says the system must modernize and maximize its revenue opportunities for the parks to stay open in the future.
“We’re trying to catch up and be a 21st century organization, and I would say from a technological standpoint, we were more like a mid-70s organization at best,” Jackson told an independent commission examining the parks system Wednesday in Sacramento.
He says he wants to employ more seasonal workers at park kiosks to raise more revenue – and review the system’s underperforming concessions contracts.
After the meeting, Jackson told Capital Public Radio that the department will need that extra revenue – and more money from the state budget – to keep the entire parks system open after June.