After promising that new corporate sponsorship programs for Idaho’s state parks wouldn’t lead to renaming state parks for Coca-Cola or Doritos, state parks board members were faced with new administrative rules last week that actually didn’t rule that out.
As reported by the Spokesman-Review, the proposed rules put lots of limits on naming rights at parks. Any naming “should be carefully considered so that the perceptions of the public are positive and the recognition does not imply private or exclusive use or ownership,” they said.
Also, the proposed rules said, “State parks and units, in most cases, should bear the name to which they have been historically known due to location, topography, natural resources or cultural values.”
But then there was this clause: “The board may name a new state park or unit in honor of an individual – living or deceased – or an entity that has contributed specifically to the park or unit acquisition and that represents achievement of highest distinction in a professional or public service role which does not conflict with the department mission and goals.”
That seems to leave the door open to just what parks officials promised to avoid, if the “entity” is a big donor to the park. So when the state Board of Parks and Recreation examined the proposed rules at its meeting Thursday in McCall, it hit the brakes.
“We asked for revisions – we did not approve the rules,” said board member Tom Crimmins of Hayden Lake. “We need to clarify that.”
For the full story click here.