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Governor to lift state park alcohol ban

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September 22, 2010

By Christopher Bedford

LINCOLN, Nebraska: Starting January 1, visitors to Nebraska state parks will be able to have a drink with their picnics, reports Action 3 News’s Carrie Murphy[1].

Governor Dave Heineman will sign new rules allowing alcohol in state parks, with the exception Lake McConaughy in Ogallala and appropriately marked state wildlife management areas. The exception of Lake McConaughy is due to public opposition to the lifting of the ban there.[1]

"Personal responsibility is crucial to maintaining a safe environment for patrons of our parks, and as Governor, it is a critical component to my decision making," says Heineman. "But I am approving these rules and regulations with the clear understanding that if there are repeated and significant violations, the Director of the Game and Parks Commission fully intends to use his authority to immediately rescind that individual state park's authorization for alcohol usage. Plain and simple, if park guests act irresponsibly, then patrons of that park will lose their privilege to consume alcohol in a responsible manner."[1]

The new rules continue to disallow drinking on roads, pools and parking lots. Drinking alcohol will be prohibited between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m., as will containers holding more than one gallon of alcohol. The Game and Parks Commission may also prohibit alcohol in any park area or state wildlife management area if there are appropriate warning signs.[1]