Wednesday, June 13, 2012

illegal conversions of LWCF parks

An MSNBC article posted this week gives us a vivid picture of what sort of bullet we managed to dodge in our efforts to protect Kah Tai. Parks created with LWCF funds have been illegally converted all over the US.

The most effective tool that NPS has in the effort to protect parks created with LWCF funds is an interested and vigilant public that requires local governments to honor their commitments. NPS can apply penalties to local governments that illegally convert parks, but it still is a matter of asking forgiveness and not permission if the damage is already done. If Kah Tai was converted, the City and Port would be required to provide replacement land elsewhere with the same citizen access and habitat value.

We have wildlife habitat that has taken nearly 50 years to develop after the dredge spoils were dumped in 1964. That habitat has been fostered with considerable citizen effort since park creation in 1981. Kah Tai is unique. It is irreplaceable.

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