ALEXANDER PRAISES PARK SERVICE FOR PRESERVING IMPORTANCE OF CONSERVATION IN UPDATED MANAGEMENT POLICIES

Posted on August 31, 2006

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) made the following statement today praising the National Park Service’s final 2006 Management Policies, which were issued this morning: “I want to commend the National Park Service for preserving the importance of conservation when there is a conflict between the protection of resources and use and for improving the ability of park superintendents to protect park air quality and guard against noise pollution. This is exactly what folks who care about the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and our other national parks want. “I also want to commend the leadership of outgoing Director Fran Mainella and Interior Secretary Kempthorne for the job they have done in bringing this revision process to a positive conclusion.” Alexander, vice chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on National Parks, raised concerns about an earlier draft of proposed new management policies during a Nov. 1, 2005 subcommittee hearing. He pressed for an extension, which was later granted, of the time allotted for comment from the public before a draft of the proposed management policies was published. In a Feb. 2, 2006 letter to National Park Service Director Fran Mainella, Alexander expressed concerns that an earlier draft of the proposed new management policies “reduced the importance of conservation, impaired park air quality, and increased the likelihood of noise pollution.” On June 19 of this year, Alexander praised the revised draft of the management policies that was announced by Secretary Kempthorne.