Press Release Dec 14, 2017

Park Proposal for National Monument a Distraction

Move by Utah Congressman Seen as Another Attempt to Dismantle Protections for Public Lands.

Background: Following the Trump administrations illegal move to erase and gut protections at Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments in Utah, today the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee will host a hearing to discuss Congressman Chris Stewart’s proposal to create a national park site at Grand Staircase.

Statement by Theresa Pierno, President and CEO for National Parks Conservation Association

“This bill is a distraction from the attack taking place on our national monuments, and we’re not falling for it. This is just another attempt to dismantle protections for public lands that belong to all Americans. Congressman Stewart is trying to pull a bait and switch with his bill, to advance the Trump administration’s anti-public lands agenda. The legislation would protect just a small portion of Grand Staircase-Escalante, while the administration is stripping protections from more than 40 percent of this landscape.

“Let there be no mistake, NPCA strongly opposes this bill. It would set a dangerous precedent by making grazing among the primary purposes of the national park instead of protecting this remarkable landscape for all who visit it. The bill calls for a management council that consists of Utah county officials, without appropriate oversight or input from the National Park Service, the federal agency charged with managing and protecting America’s more than 400 national park sites.

“This bill caters to special interests and aims to advance President Trump’s illegal attack on monuments – the largest elimination of public lands protections in our history. Congress must reject this bill and listen to the voices of millions of people who want our public lands preserved and protected in perpetuity.”

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About National Parks Conservation Association: Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its 1.3 million supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s natural, historical, and cultural heritage for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.