Wednesday, August 04, 2021

Regier misses the mark on Glacier Park and state parks

| June 16, 2021 1:00 AM

State Representative Matt Reiger, who happens to be my neighbor, recently penned a letter to every newspaper in Montana lamenting the new ticketed entry system into Glacier National Park. In this same letter he also stated, “try today and get a camping spot at one of our state parks and you will be met with frustration.”

I would respectfully like to remind Rep. Regier that access to Glacier Park hasn’t changed if you are willing to wake up a little earlier and make it there by 6 a.m.

I would also like to remind Rep. Regier that, as an elected state representative, he is directly responsible for the funding and management of our state parks, which have been setting new records in visitation every year for over a decade. Rep. Regier and his legislative colleagues even found it wise to cut our state parks division's base budget by half a million dollars this session.

Perhaps it’s time for the State of Montana to stop spending $10 million dollars every budget cycle on out-of-state advertising to bring more people to our state parks. Maybe it’s time to keep these funds in Montana by investing in our state parks and public access sites.

I look forward to the good work of Rep. Regier and his colleagues during the next legislative session to address his concerns.

Will Hammerquist is owner and operator of the Polebridge Mercantile & Bakery located 1 mile from Glacier Park in Polebridge.