Wildlife enthusiasts, birdwatchers, fishermen, hunters, and other stakeholders have been denied access to national parks, wildlife refuges, monuments, and other areas as the U.S. Government Shutdown continues.
Theresa Pierno, Acting President of the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) made the following statements in response to the shutdown:
“The National Parks Conservation Association is deeply disappointed that Congress and the President have failed to reach agreement on a budget deal that consequently has forced the federal government and our 401 national parks to shut down indefinitely. The closure of America’s crown jewels threatens the livelihood of park businesses and gateway communities; the more than 21,000 National Park Service staff we expect to be furloughed; and countless American families and international visitors who rely on national parks being open for business to enjoy our national heritage.
“The government shutdown has forced the National Park Service to close park entrances, visitor centers, campgrounds, bathrooms, concession stands, and other park facilities. Education programs and special events have been canceled, permits issued for special activities rescinded, hotels and campgrounds emptied and entrances secured. . .”
NPCA estimates that local communities could loose as much as $30 million each day the national parks are closed in October.