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State parks may suffer

November 14, 2003
By: Ann M. Hynek
State Capital Bureau

Thirty-seven state park employees retired this year, leaving some important positions vacant. Ann Hynek has the story.

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The Retirement Incentive Bill says workers who retired after January 1 and before November don't have to pay higher insurance rates.

But the bill specified that the state could only fill one out of every four vacated jobs.

State park spokesman Sue Holst says that with less people, some parks may not be maintained the way they were a year ago.

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Contents: Holst says that people may not be getting the level of service that they're used to.

But, Holst says visitors should still be able to enjoy the parks.

From the state Capitol, I'm Ann Hynek. Date: November 14, 2003

By: Ann M. Hynek

State Capital Bureau

The state parks division is seeking a waiver to allow them to hire new employees. Ann Hynek has the story.

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Thirty seven Missouri state park workers retired this year and avoided paying higher health insurance rates.

But the Retirement Incentive law that allowed for this tax break only lets state parks fill twenty-five percent of the jobs left open.

State park spokesperson Sue Holst says the division asked the state for a waiver to get these jobs filled.

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Contents: Holst says the bill allowed law enforcement to fill their positions, and they want a waiver to extend this to park rangers.

Holste says that because of the off-season, possible problems won't arise until next year.

From the state Capitol, I'm Ann Hynek. Date: November 14, 2003

By: Ann M. Hynek

State Capital Bureau

Thirty-seven park workers retired this year, which may force some state parks to reduce their hours or even close some sites.

Ann Hynek has the story.

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Missouri park workers who retired after January first avoided paying higher insurance rates under the Retirement Incentive law.

But the law only allows one person to be hired for every four jobs vacated.

State park spokesman Sue Holst says that people may see a difference in park service.

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Contents: Holst says that people may not be getting the level of service that they're used to.

The state park division asked the administration to waive the one-and-four clause of the law to fill the empty positions.

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Contents: Holst say the bill allowed law enforcement to fill their positions, and they want a waiver to extend this to park rangers.

Holst says that this should not discourage people from visiting the parks.

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Contents: Holst says she hopes people don't think that state parks are in crisis. She still wants people to visit the parks.

Holst says any problems the division has won't be apparent until next year.

From the state Capitol, I'm Ann Hynek.