National Parks Group Express Concerns for “Federal Overreach Summit” in Alaska

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   August 12, 2013
Contact:   Kati Schmidt, Senior Media Relations Manager, National Parks Conservation Association: 415.847.1768


National Parks Group Express Concerns for “Federal Overreach Summit” in Alaska

Statement by Jim Stratton, Senior Regional Director for Alaska, National Parks Conservation Association

Background
The Citizens' Advisory Commission on Federal Areas (CACFA) is hosting a Federal Overreach Summit on August 12-13, 2013 at the Dena’ina Center in Anchorage.  The goal of the summit is described as an opportunity to generate rational, collaborative, and effective actions to improve state/federal relations which can be taken to state and Congressional leaders.  Ironically, federal agencies were not invited to participate at the summit.

Statement by Jim Stratton, Senior Regional Director for Alaska, National Parks Conservation Association
“The universal symbol of freedom and democracy represented by the Statue of Liberty; the birthplace of the U.S. Constitution at Independence Hall; and the commanding landscapes that dominate Denali National Park have one thing in common – they belong to all Americans; not to the states of New York, Pennsylvania, or Alaska. While such lands belong to all Americans, the state of Alaska enjoys tremendous tourism-related benefits from our national parks, wildlife refuges, forests, and other federal lands. Not providing an opportunity for federal agencies to participate in this summit is a case of federal under-reach, and is not a productive way for achieving the stated goal of generating collaborative actions.”

“The Department of the Interior recently released an economic report, indicating that $370 million was generated for the state of Alaska in 2012 from recreational visits to federal lands. The state of Alaska benefits from the third highest per capita rate of federal spending, from the $10 billion it receives annually for defense, federal retirement programs, grants to fund nonprofit organizations, and beyond.”  

“As a former member of the Citizens’ Advisory Commission on Federal Areas (CACFA), I am discouraged by the counterintuitive steps CACFA is taking with its ‘federal overreach’ summit. Instead of fostering collaboration, the summit’s format does the opposite by pitting state vs. fed.  Treating federal land managers as the enemy is not productive for fostering a healthy conversation about how to manage federal lands and waters.  Historically, the commission was dedicated to forward-facing actions, but with this summit it seems that it is only focused on taking steps backwards.”

“In order to move forward, agencies need to recognize each other’s – and their own – places at their respective tables. The federal government has every right to manage their own lands, just as the state of Alaska provides its own regulations for lands under its control.”

# # #  

Close

Want to learn more about the  ?

The   can be seen in the wild in America’s national parks. Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Sign up to protect parks in   & other states

Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association Community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Sign up to protect   and other National Parks

Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association Community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Please leave this field empty
Yes, please sign me up for NPCA’s newsletter and other emails about protecting our national parks!

National Parks Conservation Association
National Parks Conservation Association

Log In

Or log in with your connected Facebook or Twitter account:

GO

Welcome to our growing community of park advocates. Thanks for signing up!

Sign Up:

Or sign up by connecting your Facebook or Twitter account:

GO