Photo by Dale Shrull

Rifle Falls State Park drew more than 100,000 visitors in 2014, and those who enjoy recreating in the park hope the new draft strategic plan by Colorado Parks and Wildlife will include money for park upkeep. Opponents of Colorado Parks and Wildlife, which merged the Colorado Division of Wildlife and the Department of State Parks in 2011, believe that merging two separate entities will result in one being favored over the other. Supporters say that won’t be the case.

CPW’s new mission

Four years after merger, new agency hopes strategic plan meets needs of outdoor enthusiasts

GLENWOOD SPRINGS — Back in March of 2011, Gov. John Hickenlooper made the decision to merge the Colorado Division of Wildlife and the Department of State Parks.
With the goal of streamlining government, Hickenlooper’s bold move was met with skepticism and anger.
The Governor used a three “E” philosophy when he molded certain areas of government, including the new Colorado Parks and Wildlife agency, saying the goal was to make government more “Efficient, Effective and Elegant.”
On June 6, 2011, the merging of the two agencies, which were divisions in the Department of Natural Resources, was signed into law.
For some, the jury is still out, but now the single agency is motoring toward an official strategic plan more than four years after the merger.

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