National Parks Group Opens First Pennsylvania Office

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   March 3, 2006
Contact:   Cinda Waldbuesser, Pennsylvania Program Manager
National Parks Conservation Association
Phone: 215.327.2529


National Parks Group Opens First Pennsylvania Office

Philadelphia, PENNSYLVANIA - With our nation’s history strongly entrenched in Pennsylvania’s national parks, the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C., has opened its first office in southeastern Pennsylvania to advocate for the protection of the state’s national parks.

“Growing up with numerous national parks in my backyard, I am thrilled to have the opportunity to help protect them for future generations,” said CindaWaldbuesser, NPCA’s Pennsylvania program manager. “We must ensure that the next generation is able to visit Pennsylvania’s national parks to enjoy their natural beauty and discover our nation’s history.”

Next week, Waldbuesser will testify at the Environmental Protection Agency hearing on National Ambient Air Quality Standards in Philadelphia. She will address the need to set appropriate limits on pollution in Pennsylvania to protect the views and natural treasures found in our national parks. The hearing will take place on March 8 at the Holiday Inn Historic District, 400 Arch Street, Philadelphia, at 9:00 a.m.

Pennsylvania native Cinda Waldbuesser will serve as NPCA’s Pennsylvania program manager. With a strong background in coalition building and public policy, Waldbuesser will work to build and empower a strong coalition of park advocates to effectively engage in protecting and preserving Pennsylvania’s national parks.

One of the Pennsylvania program office’s main concerns is protecting the state’s national parks from commercial development. Since the Park Service does not own ten percent of land within Valley Forge and twenty percent of land within Gettysburg, these two parks are especially vulnerable to development. In recent years, Valley Forge has nearly lost land twice to development. First, when a 62-unit luxury housing development was proposed for construction on privately held land within park boundaries and second, when a veteran’s cemetery was almost built on park land.

NPCA’s top priorities in the U.S. Congress include significantly increasing funding for the national parks in Pennsylvania and across the country, which are short more than $600 million annually. Both U.S. Senators Arlen Specter and Rick Santorum have been strong supporters of national parks in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania Representatives Philip English, Jim Gerlach, and Todd Platts are also cosponsors of the National Park Centennial Act, which will provide new funding to address critical park needs such as the preservation of historic buildings and museum artifacts, and the removal of invasive species. To gain legislative support, NPCA’s Pennsylvania office will with work with members of Congress for the passage of the National Park Centennial Act.

Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice of the American people in protecting and enhancing our National Park System. NPCA, its members, and partners work together to protect the park system and preserve our nation’s natural, historical, and cultural heritage for generations to come. NPCA is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization with more than 300,000 members, including more than 13,000 members in Pennsylvania.

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Editors can obtain photos of national parks in Pennsylvania or of Cinda Waldbuesser by contacting Cinda at telephone: 215-327-2529; or email: cwaldbuesser@npca.org. For more information about NPCA, visit: www.npca.org.

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