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JONES’ HATTERAS BEACH ACCESS BILL GOING TO THE HOUSE FLOOR NEXT WEEK
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Tuesday, June 19th, the language of Congressman Walter B. Jones’ (NC-3) bill, H.R. 4094 – the Preserving Access to Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area Act – will be brought to the House floor for a vote. Congressman Jones’ bill to restore reasonable pedestrian and motorized access to Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area will be introduced as part of H.R. 2578 – the Conservation and Economic Growth Act – a package of fourteen Natural Resources Committee bills that will create new American jobs, grow the economy, protect the environment and promote development of domestic energy. Last week H.R. 4094 passed out of the House Natural Resources Committee on a roll call vote of 24-18.
“This bill is about jobs and the taxpayers’ right to access the recreational areas they own. It’s about restoring balance and common sense to Park Service management,” said Jones.
Congressman Jones’ bill would overturn a final rule implemented by the National Park Service (NPS) in mid-February, as well as the 2008 U.S. District court approved Consent Decree. Both the Rule and the Consent Decree excessively restrict human access to the Recreational Area. The bill would reinstitute the Park Service’s 2007 Interim Management Strategy (IMS) to govern visitor access and species protection in the Recreational Area. The Interim Strategy was backed up by a 113-page Biological Opinion issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service which found that it would not jeopardize the species of concern, namely piping plover and sea turtles.