The Department of the Interior is soliciting nominations for the newly created “Made in America” Outdoor Recreation Advisory Committee. The Committee will provide advice to the Secretary on the public-private partnerships across all public lands, with the goal of expanding access to and improving infrastructure on public lands and waterways. Click “Read More” to see our nomination.
Proposed NPS Fee Increases Are Over the Top
The NPS proposal to double peak season entrance fees at 17 of the most popular national parks is fundamentally flawed and, if implemented, will do more harm than good. Click “Read More” to see our comment letter opposing the fee increases.
In a letter to the members of the House Ways & Means Committee, the Coalition requested that the Federal Historic Preservation Tax Incentives Program be retained in a reformed tax code when Congress considers H.R. 1, the Tax Cut and Jobs Act. The introduced bill fails to include this vital federal tax incentive – a proven tool that creates local jobs, preserves historic buildings and returns more to the Treasury than it costs.
The Coalition and the National Parks Conservation Association have submitted a joint comment letter to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) expressing concerns about proposed oil and gas leasing along the boundary of the North Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Click “Read More” to see our letter to the BLM.
The administration’s proposal for a massive fee increase in 17 national parks, including Yellowstone, Yosemite, Arches and Rocky Mountain, goes too far and may have major implications on park visitation and the economies of gateway communities. The fee increases are part of an effort to address the deferred maintenance backlog in the NPS, but the money raised will only cover a small percentage of the billions of dollars required. While creative solutions are required to solve this problem, the proposal as it stands does not adequately address it. Click “Read More” for more information.
Executive Council member, Dave Graber, spoke out in his local newspaper, the Bakersfield Californian, about the significant need to address the NPS maintenance backlog. Graber says, “Congress has a chance to turn the maintenance backlog around. If passed, the bipartisan National Park Legacy Act (S.751/H.R.2584) will ensure that there is dedicated funding for park maintenance in each year’s budget.” Click “Read More” to read Dave’s editorial.
The Coalition spoke out against drilling rights near Dinosaur National Monument. Executive Council member, Mike Murray, described them as “indefensible,” and part of a new wave of “signs and signals” about the administration’s policy intentions. Click “Read More” for more information.
This fall, over 350 former employees of the National Park Service joined the Coalition’s sign-on letter expressing extreme disappointment with the results of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s recent review of national monuments. The recommendations from Zinke – which included downsizing several monuments – came at the conclusion of an unprecedented 4-month review of over two-dozen monuments designated since 1996, which was initiated by an April Executive Order from President Trump. Efforts by the Trump Administration to remove protections from national monuments or significantly downsize them would be unprecedented and are likely to be met with a quagmire of legal challenges. Click “Read More” to read the letter sent to Secretary Ryan Zinke.
In response to the NPS Work Environment Survey, the Coalition released a statement expressing our concern on the results and our cautious optimism of the first steps that have been taken to address the far reaching harassment issues in the service. The NPS’s future success depends on taking comprehensive and effective steps to make cultural changes in the workplace. The first steps that have been taken are positive, but it must be a long-term and continuous strategy to make an impact.
House Natural Resource Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) has introduced legislation that would dismantle key provisions of the Antiquities Act, which has been used by Republican and Democratic presidents alike to protect some of America’s most iconic and beloved parks and public lands. Click “Read More” to see our statement opposing the bill.