…A new study released this month by Headwaters Economics, of Bozeman, Mont., shows how much communities around national parks like Teton County benefit. The local areas around Yellowstone have 5,155 jobs tied to the national park with visitors spending $302 million in 2009, the Headwaters report by economist Ray Rasker shows.…
Grand Teton anchors 6,238 jobs and generates another $2.5 million in visitor spending. Idaho gets a piece of both of these but it also benefits from other public lands managed by the National Park Service.
City of Rocks National Preserve south of Burley, a climber and camping mecca managed by Idaho’s Parks and Recreation Department under contract for the National Park Service, creates 86 jobs. It generated $6.4 million in visitor spending to the local area in 2009.
Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve near Arco supports 104 jobs and creates $5.8 million in visitor spending in Idaho. Imagine how much more it could tap with visitor centers accessing its unique ice caves along its southern boundary near Interstate 84.
Nez Perce National Historic Park, which has 38 sites in Idaho, Oregon, Washington and Montana and is headquartered in Lapwai, creates 140 jobs and generates $6 million from visitors.
Rural Idaho as a whole continues to lose population much like the rest of the arid West and plains. But those places next to our national land treasures continue to thrive.
Link to Article by Rocky Barker