|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
|Date:||October 2, 2013|
|Contact:||Shannon Andrea, Director of Media Relations, National Parks Conservation Association, Office: 202.454.3371 Cell: 202.365.5912|
Congress Debates Reopening National Parks Across the Country
Statement By: Theresa Pierno, Acting President, National Parks Conservation Association
“The National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) is not surprised that Congress is fighting over opening our national parks. They are tremendously popular national symbols and treasures, economically significant, and demonstrable examples of the pain that is being caused by the government shutdown. NPCA certainly welcomes congressional efforts to get our parks open as quickly as possible, however temporarily opening our parks will not solve the long-term problem. Nor will it prevent the closures that are still ahead because of insufficient funding and the sequester.
“National parks, park-dependent businesses, park employees and visitors need the certainty of knowing that our national parks will not merely be reopened temporarily, but permanently, and that those parks will be equipped with the funding necessary to serve park visitors and protect our national treasures.
“National parks are symbols of unity and national pride. According to a recent poll, nine out of ten Americans—Republicans, Democrats and Independents—want and expect the federal government to keep national parks open, protected and funded. The shutdown affects national park supporters in many ways, whether it has already disrupted their wedding, school trip, or planned vacation to a national park or other public land, or affects other aspects of their daily lives, from crumbling roads and bridges to the protection of their drinking water. It’s time for Congress and the President to unify around a complete solution for our national parks and the American people, reopen our government and cancel the sequester.”