Former Texas Legislator Doug McLeod to Help Lead Lone Star Coastal National Recreation Area Partners Coalition

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   October 18, 2012
Contact:   Perry Wheeler, 301-675-8766, pwheeler@npca.org


Former Texas Legislator Doug McLeod to Help Lead Lone Star Coastal National Recreation Area Partners Coalition

Galveston, TX – This week, Chairman of the Lone Star Coastal National Recreation Area Steering Committee John L. Nau III announced the appointment of former Texas legislator and long-time Moody executive E. Douglas McLeod as Vice-Chair of the Partners Coalition that is working to shape the proposed national recreation area. Nau and former Secretary of State James A. Baker III have assembled a coalition of Galveston, Matagorda, Brazoria and Chambers County representatives and stakeholders to achieve a national recreation area designation from the U.S. Congress along the upper Texas Coast.

“Doug McLeod will bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Lone Star Coastal National Recreation Area project,” said Nau. “He has been influential in chairing and coordinating the $600 million eco-tourism Moody Gardens development for nearly 30 years, and we’re confident he will help bring this important project to fruition as well.”

McLeod, an attorney and Texas legislator with 14 years of experience as an elected public official at both the local and state levels, will help lead the Partners Coalition – a voluntary group composed of organizations and governments that own parks, preserves, historic sites and open lands within the proposed National Recreation Area. Members of the Partners Coalition include representatives of Galveston Bay Foundation, Scenic Galveston, Sea Scout Base – Galveston, Gulf Coast Bird Observatory, Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary, Galveston Historical Foundation and The Nature Conservancy, among others.

A 2011 economic impact study released by the National Parks Conservation Association, in conjunction with others, found that by year ten, the site could attract 1,500,000 visitors supporting $192 million in local sales and 5,260 local jobs.

“This is an exciting project that would effectively leverage the vast offerings of our Texas Coast – recreational, historic and cultural – to enhance the future of our citizens and businesses,” said McLeod. “I’m happy to be a part of the push to bring these long-term economic benefits and jobs to this region where they are so urgently needed.”

The Lone Star Coastal National Recreation Area would bring national and international attention to the many recreational assets of the upper Texas Coast, including bird-watching, seasonal hunting, sport fishing, crabbing, canoeing, kayaking, camping, hiking and cycling opportunities, as well as to the tremendous historic and cultural resources that help tell the tales of Texas, the Gulf Coast and the nation. The national recreation area could reduce storm surge damage, while serving as an economic development engine for the four participating counties. This would greatly benefit the county’s residents, as well as visitors to the region.

Additionally, Lone Star Coastal would be compatible with both the proposed Ike Dike and SSPEED Center’s storm protection plans, as well as with other structural surge mitigation alternatives that might emerge in the future. The national recreation area could be a stand-alone entity if needed, subject to future selection and development of alternative plans.

For more information on Lone Star Coastal National Recreation Area, click here: http://www.npca.org/about-us/regional-offices/texas/lone-star/

For additional information on the partners coalition and steering committee, click here: http://www.npca.org/about-us/regional-offices/texas/lone-star/people.html

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