Skip to comments.93 House members charge Park Service is 'making up' rules to shut memorials
Posted on 10/10/2013 6:46:16 AM PDT by markomalley
The National Park Services closure of the World War II and other memorials violates rules requiring them to stay open, 93 House members charge in a letter to the agency.
Led by Michigan Republican Rep. Bill Huizenga, they claim that Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis is simply making up closure rules to punish the public during the government shut down and they question the costs of the random closures in Washington where not all memorials are being closed.
"The National Park Service continues to act in an arbitrary and punitive manner to exclude veterans from memorials built in their honor and the American people from many of our country's national treasures. I have serious questions about the tactics and decisions being implemented by the National Park Service and clearly many of my colleagues do as well," said Huizenga.
"Director Jarvis cannot simply make up the rules as he goes along, which is one of the major reasons my colleagues and I sent this letter requesting concrete and definitive answers, added Huizenga.
According to the National Parks Conservation Association there are 401 U.S. parks closed as of Thursday, including the Mall in downtown Washington and nearby Shenandoah National Park.
The letter from nearly a quarter of the members of the House of Representatives cites the contingency plan used by the Park Service to determine memorial closings that they say clearly requires big memorials in urban areas to remain open.
The National Park Service section of that plan clearly states that: All concession operated services and facilities would be closed unless they are deemed essential for health and safety reasons, are needed to support on-going excepted NPS activities or are located in urban areas where...full NPS law enforcement coverage is continued due to the inability to control visitor access, said the letter provided to Secrets.
These urban, open-air memorials seem to be precisely the type of exception outlined in the departments plan and, as such, should remain open to the public, the 93 added.
Their letter, below, asks the Park Service to explain the policy and nudges the agency to keep them open, as many were during the last government shutdown.
October 9, 2013
Jonathan B. Jarvis
Director - National Park Service
U.S. Department of the Interior
1849 C St. NW
Washington D.C. 20240
Dear Director Jarvis:
As you are no doubt aware, the closure of select open-air monuments and park service units during the ongoing partial government shutdown has been a cause of great concern for the public.
In particular, the barricades erected around open-air sites like the World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam War memorials served to inconvenience countless veterans travelling to Washington, D.C. as part of honor flights from around the country.
It is our understanding that specific park closures were determined according to the Contingency Plan for Operations in the Absence of FY 2014 Appropriations dated September 26, 2013. The National Park Service section of that plan clearly states that:
All concession operated services and facilities would be closed unless they are deemed essential for health and safety reasons, are needed to support on-going excepted NPS activities or are located in urban areas where...full NPS law enforcement coverage is continued due to the inability to control visitor access.
These urban, open-air memorials seem to be precisely the type of exception outlined in the Departments plan and, as such, should remain open to the public.
Due to the continued lack of consistent implementation of this plan, we would like a better understanding of the process that led to these decisions. Please respond to the following questions:
Multiple lower profile open-air memorials and areas remain open on the National Mall and around the National Capital Region. What factors were considered when the determination was made to close some areas, while leaving others open?
During the partial government shutdown of 1995 and 1996 the currently closed memorials on the National Mall remained open. What were the contributing factors to this change in NPS policy?
What is the cost to operate an open-air site such as the World War II Memorial on a typical day? How much is the National Park Service saving per day at that memorial by operating in its current shutdown posture?
What is the estimated total cost to install barricades and patrol the perimeter of each open-air memorial and area during the shutdown. What is the total cost to breakdown and remove all barricades once normal operations resume?
On multiple occasions since the shutdown began, members and staff have counted as many as seven NPS employees on-site at the World War II Memorial. How many NPS staff members are assigned to these memorials during a normal shift?
Initially, NPS logo signs were posted at each of the closed memorials indicating that the area was closed due to the government shutdown. On the second day of the shutdown the signs were removed and replaced with new, non-logo signs simply stating that This site is closed. Why were the original signs replaced and who requested the change? How much did it cost to remove and replace these signs?
We look forward to your response and stand ready to work with the National Park Service to ensure that the American people arent unnecessarily burdened during the ongoing federal government shutdown.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this urgent matter.
Representative Bill Huizenga (MI-02)
1. Rep. Lynn Jenkins (KS-02)
2. Rep. Jim Bridenstine (OK-01)
3. Rep. Stephen Fincher (TN-08)
4. Rep. Bob Gibbs (OH-07)
5. Rep. Jeff Duncan (SC-03)
6. Rep. Billy Long (MO-07)
7. Rep. Richard Nugent (FL-11)
8. Rep. Dan Benishek (MI-01)
9. Rep. Lee Terry (NE-02)
10. Rep. Kevin Cramer (ND)
11. Rep. Matt Salmon (AZ-05)
12. Rep. Doug LaMalfa (CA-01)
13. Rep. Jason Smith (MO-08)
14. Rep. Phil Gingrey (GA-11)
15. Rep. John Campbell (CA-45)
16. Rep. Tim Walberg (MI-07)
17. Rep. Michelle Bachmann (MN-06)
18. Rep. Steve Stivers (OH-15)
19. Rep. Keith Rothfus (PA-12)
20. Rep. Tim Griffin (AR-02)
21. Rep. Phil Roe (TN-01)
22. Rep. Bill Cassidy (LA-06)
23. Rep. Mark Sanford (SC-01)
24. Rep. Steve King (IA-04)
25. Rep. Doug Lamborn (CO-05)
26. Rep. Steve Stockman (TX-36)
27. Rep. David Valadao (CA-21)
28. Rep. Aaron Schock (IL-18)
29. Rep. Tom Petri (WI-06)
30. Rep. Alan Nunnelee (MS-01)
31. Rep. Bill Posey (FL-08)
32. Rep. Renee Ellmers (NC-02)
33. Rep. Justin Amash (MI-03)
34. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (GA-03)
35. Rep. Spencer Bachus (AL-06)
36. Rep. Mike Kelly (PA-03)
37. Rep. Larry Bucshon (IN-8)
38. Rep. Joe Wilson (SC-02)
39. Rep. Robert Pittenger (NC-09)
40. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27)
41. Rep. Louie Gohmert (TX-01)
42. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (TN-03)
43. Rep. Scott Garrett (NJ-05)
44. Rep. Bill Flores (TX-17)
45. Rep. Robert Latta (OH-05)
46. Rep. Vicky Hartzler (MO-4)
47. Rep. Jackie Walorski (IN-02)
48. Rep. Brad Wenstrup (OH-02)
49. Rep. Trent Franks (AZ-08)
50. Rep. Ted Poe (TX-02)
51. Rep. David McKinley (WV-01)
52. Rep. Mick Mulvaney (SC-05)
53. Rep. David Reichert (WA-08)
54. Rep. Tom McClintock (CA-04)
55. Rep. Paul Broun (GA-10)
56. Rep. Richard Hudson (NC-08)
57. Rep. Scott DesJarlais (TN-04)
58. Rep. Stevan Pearce (NM-02)
59. Rep. Jack Kingston (GA-01)
60. Rep. Jeff Miller (FL-01)
61. Rep. Kevin Yoder (KS-03)
62. Rep. Tom Cotton (AR-04)
63. Rep. Mac Thornberry (TX-13)
64. Rep. Steve Chabot (OH-01)
65. Rep. Joseph Pitts (PA-16)
66. Rep. Chris Stewart (UT-02)
67. Rep. Robert Aderholt (Al-04)
68. Rep. Randy Hultgren (IL-14)
69. Rep. Bob Goodlatte (VA-06)
70. Rep. David Joyce (OH-14)
71. Rep. Cynthia Lummis (WY)
72. Rep. Pete Olson (TX-22)
73. Rep. Tom Price (GA-06)
74. Rep. Randy Neugebauer (TX-19)
75. Rep. Andy Harris (MD-01)
76. Rep. Mike Conaway (TX-11)
77. Rep. Bill Johnson (OH-06)
78. Rep. Gregg Harper (MS-03)
79. Rep. Reid Ribble (WI-8)
80. Rep. Steve Daines (MT)
81. Rep. John Fleming (LA-04)
82. Rep. Scott Perry (PA-04)
83. Rep. Marlin Stutzman (IN-03)
84. Rep. Joe Barton (TX-06)
85. Rep. Cory Gardner (CO-04)
86. Rep. Todd Rokita (IN-04)
87. Rep. Randy Weber (TX-14)
88. Rep. Rodney Davis (IL-13)
89. Rep. Jon Runyan (NJ-03)
90. Rep. Mark Meadows (NC-11)
91. Rep. Andy Barr (KY-06)
92. Rep. Robert Hurt (VA-06)
93. Rep. Kerry Bentivolio (MI-11)
The NPS public servants sure got into this government shutdown. A lot of “inner Nazis” came out of the tree huggers.
Why are these wimps blaming the NPS? They should be blaming NPS director Jarvis as Obama’s Quisling.
Obama. Obama. Obama.
Stop being so darn polite and get in his face. (And the media’s face.)
I have not yet seen any substantial cases of civil disobedience noted in the news regarding breaching the Barrycades. Is it happening yet?
Once respected Federal law enforcement agencies such as ATF and National Park Service Rangers have been transformed into Obama goon squads.
and keep their feet to the fire to get the answers
“93 House members charge in a letter to the agency.”
The NPS is SOOOOO scared.
Good point. There’s a very real potential for one of these Yogi Bear ranger types to fancy themselves as suddenly empowered to be “enforcers” and step over the line. An emotional reaction by an untrained person that could easily lead to a needless tradedy if you know what I mean. Its worrisome.
Hitler Jarvis never killed Barrycaded anyone. He was only GIVING ORDERS!
Literally decades of work to build up public trust, gone in a matter of days. Way to go, Park Service. Way to go.
Another example of how everything Obama touches turns to sh!t.
In general, most feds will do whatever they’re told. They will follow orders and will NOT risk their jobs for anything. You can be sure of that.
Way to go, House members!! Fight the fascist bastards!!
Hold the line against Obama and his corrupt Marxist minions!! We can do this!!
Our future as a free nation hangs in the balance!!
Make an announcement park supervisors attitude during shut down will be assessed for promotion to the new National Park at Fukishima Japan...
I don’t see my Congresscretin’s signature on this. But I’m not surprised given she’s a Commiecrat.
He's a parallel: let's say I pay my neighbor to mow my lawn. Then I decide not to pay him. So what happens? He doesn't mow my lawn. But he can't kick me off my property.
The MSM is blaming the NPS shutdowns on Congress, i.e., the Republicans.
These Congress members ask the NPS nicely to reconsider.
When are the Republicans gonna realize that Progressive ideology’s practitioners are at war with liberty and its supporters, and that we are NOT all neighbors on the same basic side with the same basic objectives?
The MSM must be crushed. Our legislators need to go after the persons of the media personally.
And we must understand that our Obama supporting friends are not our friends.
It is not punishment. It is blackmail.
They wouldn’t be doing it if they thought that Obama would disapprove.
Go even further..to the Secretary of the Interior..Sally Jewell. She replaced Salazar. I sure wish the ‘media’ could get either one of them in front of a mike to explain their actions.
Not far enough, House members, the actual federal law REQUIRES memorials and national parks to be open to the public, and if the NPS is unable to collect fees for some reason, those stations are required to be left open to the public until such time that the NPS can return to collecting fees. That any change in a park’s hours must be submitted to the public at least 90 days in advance, and the only shutdowns are permitted for emergencies; specifically spelled out - law enforcement investigations, fires or other natural disasters, or imminent health and safety concerns such as plague outbreaks and the like.
Nothing in federal law permits the closure of any national park just because the NPS says so.
Also absent is the offers by states and organizations to pay for or to operate national parks to keep them open and the rejection of those offers for the first time by the NPS.
Take Obamas head of the National Park Service, please. While serving as the Pacific West regional director of the NPS, Jon Jarvis was accused of at least 21 instances of scientific misconduct (pdf) by Dr. Corey Goodman, a high-ranking member of the National Academy of Sciences. Extensive information about Jarvis alleged role in cooking data about a California oyster farms impact on harbor seals at Point Reyes was withheld during the 2009 nomination process. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has ignored complaints and follow-up from both Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Republican Sens. James Inhofe and David Vitter.
Most gov't bureaucrats are gov't bureaucrats because they are risk averse and seek security. They are in it to 'preserve, protect and defend' their cushy jobs and pensions. Not following orders under the Jarrett/Obama regime would jeopardize that.
Obama’s Thuggery Yoggie Park Rangers.
Pawns of the US unite, it is our chess board!
Brown Shirt brown nosers.
I see our rep Rob Woodall was too busy to sign it. His excuse is that it does no good to send these letters and works on real legislation to stop these kinds of things. I think I’m not buying that argument anymore.
a Development like this.....gives one some small HOPE that we MAY survive as a Republic.
or The proposed Detroit WIlderness National Park
Would you prefer that some international Saudi-owned conglomerate buys them up for pennies on the dollar, or that we the people retake control?
After this is over I doubt if any park ranger will be respected. I know, they were only following orders. But Gestapo style?
Our reality and that of the tyrant do not however match.
The tyrant thinks that its HIS property.
Tweet this info TO EVERYONE on your facebook and twitter accounts - we have. Let your coworkers, clients, etc know also!
I thought that name..JARVIS was familiar.
she’s not well thought of at all here 30 some miles from the Oyster Farm.
Park Rangers Refuse Truckload of Porta Potties for WW II Veterans
Gateway Pundit ^ | October 9,2013 | Jim Hoft / Posted by Hojczyk
A semi carrying porta potties pulled up yesterday beside the WW II Memorial in Washington D.C.. The porta potties were donated by private citezens to help out the visiting veterans since the facilities are closed.
However, the park rangers turned the truck away and they were not allowed to unload. Michele Tennery witnessed this event and was astonished that the rangers could be so heartless in their treatment of the veterans. Michele added, The photos show the attempted delivery of Port-A-Johns by Dons Johns. The NPS Ranger would not allow the Port-A-Johns to be left at the WWII Memorial site on the grassy area (where the National Park Police have parked 10+ vehicles!).
The NPS has not opened the bathrooms at this Memorial site so there are no open bathroom facilities onsite at the WWII Memorial. Despite the actions of the park rangers a handful of porta-john were placed near the memorial overnight by private citizens.(Excerpt) Read more at thegatewaypundit.com ...
A Progressive Liberal Obama voter makes do without a porta-potty.
Jarvis is going to get a BIG promotion when this shut-down is over. Then I’m sure there will be a Congressional investigation, right?
but, but.. but. al the MSM is telling us is that the GOP is getting the blame?
How can this be?
Obama isn’t doing this, its TED CRUZ! /s
Bump for the truth!!
“Our legislators need to go after the persons of the media personally.”
Do you really think the people should leave it up to them? Perhaps it’s time for the public to fire those who abuse their positions of public trust.
Just convince them that returning to work, now or ever, would be a very...unhappy...thing for them to do.
“And we must understand that our Obama supporting friends are not our friends.”
No leftard is friend to any conservative. If you think you have a leftard friend, sorry, but you are mistaken, as you will find out when the chips are down.
‘All about power and leverage’ — feds shut down major roadway, block access to graveyard
Folks who live in the Great Smoky Mountains have just about reached their breaking point with the federal government.
Its almost like they are pushing to see how far they can push before the American people say enough is enough, said Ed Mitchell, the mayor of Blount County, Tenn. We were founded on a declaration of independence. And they are about to push the people to the line again.
Nearly a third of Blount County is inside the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. So when the federal government shut down the park, it also shut down one of the areas chief sources of revenue.
This doesn’t top out at Jarvis.
NPS last week was pointing fingers at OMB. The head of OMB is a political hack and protege of Harold Ickes.
We all know who Harold Ickes is, right?
“if the NPS is unable to collect fees for some reason, those stations are required to be left open to the public”
Imprisonment in a country club is not sufficient.
We *must* bring back flogging.
Meet lobbyist brother, Destry Jarvis.
A National Park Superintendent And His Questionable Real Estate Deal
Cape Wind’s fate unclear, even in Obama’s hands