FY 2016 Appropriation

Mission: To enhance the quality of life by preserving and providing natural, cultural, and recreational resources for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations.

Currently, Utah has 43 state parks that are a combination of heritage, scenic and recreation parks (click on the link http://naturalresources.utah.gov/divisions/state-parks.html to go to the website). Created under UCA 79-4-201, the division is responsible for management and development of all state parks, the administration and enforcement of the State Boating Act and the state off-highway vehicle program. The Board of Parks and Recreation provides policy direction.

Funding History

Related Publications

Appropriation Overview

During the 2015 General Session, the Legislature appropriated for Fiscal Year 2016, $30,462,700 from all sources for Parks and Recreation. This is a 4 percent increase from Fiscal Year 2015 revised estimated amounts from all sources. The total includes $4,661,800 from the General/Education Funds, an increase of 12 percent from revised Fiscal Year 2015 estimates.

Appropriation Adjustments

In addition to statewide compensation and internal service fund cost increases, the following appropriation adjustments were made during the 2015 General Session:

DescriptionOngoingOne-Time 07. Dead Horse Point Campground$20,000 ($20,000)
OngoingOne-TimeFinancing Source
$20,000$0General Fund
$0 ($20,000)General Fund, One-time
Priotitized #7 by the subcommittee. Estimated O&M is $20,000.
This Is The Place Park$200,000$200,000
OngoingOne-TimeFinancing Source
$200,000$0General Fund
$0$200,000General Fund, One-time
The Subcommittee voted to add more funding to prepare for when the current Park Manager and Chairman of the Board, who is a volunteer, retires and will need to be replaced by a compitent, paid manager.

The following are the top measures chosen by division management to gauge the success of its programs.

Parks Operations’ Expenditures

Expenditures: The division is using this measure to track its expenditures.


Revenues Earned “At the Gate”

"At the Gate" Revenue: Parks' goal is to attract more visitors each year. Rather than trying to count or estimate the number of visitors entering each park, the division is using actual revenue collected "at the gate" to measure their visitation.

at the gate $

Total Revenues Generated

Total Revenue Earned: Division leadership has chosen this measure with the intention to help them keep track of the revenues generated by staff. The goal is to increase revenue by 1% over the prior year's collections.



The following laws govern operation of the division:

  • UCA 79-4-702 allows "This is the Place" heritage park to be governed by a foundation and sets terms for a management agreement with the foundation.
  • UCA 79-4-305 requires the board to formulate and execute a long-range comprehensive plan and program for acquisition, planning, protection, O&M, development, and wise use of valuable areas.
  • UCA 79-4-501 requires the division to protect people and property with law enforcement. Park Rangers are given full law enforcement powers.
  • UCA 79-4-403 establishes user fees for golf. These are included with the greens fees. Fees are 1.5% of green fees, and are to be used at the park where they are collected, on operating supplies, development, or equipment, and are nonlapsing.
  • UCA 79-4-401 states that park operating and administrative expenses for administering the boating account may be charged to the boating account.
  • UCA 79-4-402 creates the GFR -- State Park Fees Account. Revenues come from all fees collected except golf user fees and the first $75,000 of bison sales proceeds.
  • UCA 79-5-103 requires the division to plan and develop a recreational trail system, work with federal land management agencies, local governments, private owners, and other state agencies to build a trails network.
  • UCA 79-5-201 creates the Recreational Trails Advisory Council.
  • UCA 41-22-10 gives the board power to appoint the Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Advisory Council and seek their recommendations. The division has the duty to seek the establishment of an OHV trail system and provide law enforcement.
  • UCA 41-22-19 requires registration fees from Off-Highway Vehicles be deposited in the GFR -- Off-Highway Vehicle Account. However, $1.50 from each registration must go to the Land Grant Management Fund for use by SITLA on its lands.
  • UCA 73-18-3 gives the board and division power and duty to make rules and enforce boating activities in the state.
  • UCA 73-18-22 creates the GFR -- Boating Account. Revenues come from registration fees, gasoline taxes, and related monies.
  • UCA 79-4-802 creates the Riverway Enhancement Program.

The Division of Parks and Recreation has two line items in its budget: Operations and Capital. The funding from the Operations line item is used for the management and development of all state parks, statewide boating safety and statewide off-highway vehicle safety. The funds from the Capital line item are used for the capital improvements and development of the facilities and infrastructure of the state parks.

Intent Language

SB0002: Item 151

The Legislature intends that the $50,000 appropriation increase for This Is the Place Heritage Park be transferred to the park only after the park has received matching funds of at least $50,000 from Salt Lake City and at least $50,000 from Salt Lake County.

Boating Account revenues come from boat registration fees as well as from gasoline tax. Potential projects must be directly related to boating recreation and be available to the general public.

The state Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Account is generated from off-highway vehicle registration fees and gasoline tax. OHV account proceeds are generally limited in scope and are usually solicited to leverage federal matching funds (such as Land and Water Conservation Fund) for projects that have an OHV recreational component. Examples include trailhead development, campground facilities for OHV users, restrooms near trails, and motocross tracks. These funds are generally limited in amount and are available on an "ad-hoc" basis.

The revenues for the State Park Fees Restricted Account primarily come from park entrance fees, camping, and golf.

Special Funds

The figures below show the division's major restricted funds over time: each fund's activities, the appropriated amount for the current fiscal year, as well as the average revenues, expenditures, and balances.


Revenue sources for the Fees Restricted Account:

Fees from entrance, camping, golfing; sales of buffalo (State Park Fees Account: UCA 79-4-402)


Revenue sources for the OHV Account:

Motorboat and sailboat registration fees (Off-Highway Vehicles Account: UCA 41-22-19)

Fuel tax (59-13-201 (8): Motor and Special Fuel Tax Act)


Revenue sources for the Boating Account:

Motorboat and sailboat registration fees (Boating Account: UCA 73-18-22)

Fuel tax (59-13-201 (6): Motor and Special Fuel Tax Act)

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COBI contains unaudited data as presented to the Legislature by state agencies at the time of publication. For audited financial data see the State of Utah's Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports.