Arizona Memorial official: tickets sales improper

HONOLULU (AP) - The superintendent of the USS Arizona Memorial says it was a mistake to sell tickets to tour operators that were supposed to be free.

Paul DePrey last week told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that selling the tickets was proper and legal, but he later said he was mistaken.

More than 4,000 tickets are available for a movie presentation and boat ride to the sunken battleship. The Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act prohibits the National Park Service from charging a fee to visit the memorial.

After an investigation, officials told DePrey the ticket sales violated park policy.

For about seven months, the park service and its nonprofit fundraising arm, Pacific Historic Parks, sold a portion of the free tickets to tour companies for a fee.

DePrey says that practice has ended.

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