Governor Steve Bullock (MTN News file photo)

WHITEHALL – Governor Bullock visited Whitehall today.

Bullock paid a visit to working lunch hosted by the Montana Parks in Focus Commission at the Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park Visitor Center.

This is the first time that the commission has met since Governor Bullock signed an executive order placing the commission as a public-private collaboration that helps provide the resources for state departments can implement Bullock’s Montana State Parks and Recreation Strategic Plan.

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“The parks themselves are fantastic the question is can we develop relationships with local communities who are willing to invest in and advocate for the parks but we have real challenges with funding and a backlog of maintenance issues but the opportunities to get around those are tremendous,” said, Stace Lindsay, Chairman of the Parks and Focus Commission.

Governor Bullock was impressed by the group.

“What we’ve done is assembled this incredible commission of thoughtful brought people that going to help chart the future for our park system and my expectation is by the end of this year they will have wrapped up their work and really built that foundation for our park system long after I’m governor,” said Bullock.

This is the first of four meetings for the commission for 2018.

Each meeting will take place at a different state park across Montana.

Reporting by Carson Vickroy for MTN News