Hearings and Business Meetings

SD-366 Energy Committee Hearing Room 10:00 AM

Senator Craig Thomas

Senator Craig Thomas — Opening Statement 
Oversight Hearing on
National Park Service Management Policies

Subcommittee on National Parks

Tuesday, November 1st , 2005

 Good morning.  I want to welcome our witnesses to today’s Subcommittee Hearing.

 Our purpose for this hearing is to review the National Park Service’s proposed management policies including potential impact of the policies on park operations, park resources, interaction with gateway communities, solicitation and collection of donations, and revised manager hiring practices.

 National Parks are special places that symbolize the American spirit.  Each park was established by Congress for a specific purpose and must be managed to sustain that purpose.   The management policies we are here to discuss are intended to guide employees as they seek to maintain the resources for current and future public enjoyment.

 We were all reminded of the public interest in National Parks when people were made aware of plans to revise the management policies.  Some overreacted by concluding that an internal working document was destined for implementation.  We now know that it is a work in progress.
 I would like to commend Steve Martin and the members of the National Park Service policy development team for being responsive to public concerns.  The purpose of this hearing is to continue to obtain public input and to ensure the National Park Service is well-informed as they complete the document.

 Again, I’d like to thank all of the witnesses for being here today.  I look forward to hearing the testimony being presented.