Today was the nomination hearing for Judy Shelton, President Trump’s latest nominee for the Federal Reserve Board. Shelton has expressed the view that the U.S. government should sell-off its “numerous federal land holdings” in order to “expedite the achievement of a balanced budget.” Phil Francis, Chair of the Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks, issued the following statement.
“Selling public lands to eliminate the nation’s budget deficit has been suggested before. It was a bad idea then and is a bad idea now. The economic value of the national parks is somewhere around $39 billion every year. Annual visitation is over 300 million visits providing economic benefits to cities and counties in nearly every state. This is true also with BLM, Forest Service, as well as Fish and Wildlife Service lands. To sell lands for short term gain at the expense of long term benefits makes no sense at all. After all, these lands are owned by us all and they contain special natural and cultural resources. I don’t think our owner citizens will approve of this ludicrous idea.”