CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia's state parks system draws big crowds looking to unwind or play in its mountains, rivers and lakes. But the eye-catching scenery is mixed with structures showing signs of decline.
State lawmakers are looking at funding options for the upkeep of a system of 35 parks, seven forests, five wildlife management areas and two rail trails. The parks system attracted more than 6.6 million visits last year.
One option that a top lawmaker would like to avoid is assessing a fee to enter the state parks.
Democratic Sen. William Laird sees not charging an entry fee as a tradition to preserve. West Virginia is among a few states that don't charge an entrance fee to state parks.