Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Is Dinosaur National Monument's staff going the way of its namesakes?

By Brandon Loomis
The Salt Lake Tribune

Dinosaur National Monument still has the namesake fossils, but the park in Utah and Colorado is cutting its caretaking staff to the bone.

Budget cuts led the park to announce last week that it will shave two of three paleontologists from the rolls. It's the latest blow to a program that already had to close its most popular attraction, an embankment of exposed dinosaur fossils inside a condemned building.

Budgetary times are tough, and visitation is down 30 percent. Some paleontologists worry that the cuts will erode a core mission and possibly endanger some of the world's most famous bones.
"They're cutting out the heart of the paleo program," said Margaret Imhof, a private contracting paleontologist in Vernal........

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