Titled: CHAPA response to proposed ORV rule.
On August 22, 2016 the National Park Service (NPS) published a proposed rule in the Federal Register (FR Doc.2016-19844) (Special Regulations; Areas of the National Park System, Cape Hatteras National Seashore-Off-Road Vehicle Management). The public comment period for the proposed rule ends on October 21, 2016. We urge you to review the proposed changes to the ORV rule and to submit comments.
The Cape Hatteras Access Preservation Alliance (CHAPA) sent the attached letter to North Carolina Senators Burr and Tillis and Congressman Jones on September 23, 2016 to advise them of our reactions to the proposed rule. We share this letter with you to aid you as you prepare your comments. Click here to open or download the September 23 CHAPA letter
The proposed rule changes were prepared by the NPS as a direct result of the legislation sponsored by our senators and congressman in December, 2014. CHAPA believes that the proposed changes to the rule will have a favorable impact on access, additional changes are necessary if the legislation is to be viewed as a success.
NPS identified Alternative 2 in Cape Hatteras National Seashore - Consideration of Modifications to the Final Rule for ORV Management Environmental Assessment - February 2016 (EA)as their preferred alternative. In March, CHAPA commented that the preferred alternative was a good starting point but that additional changes should be incorporated into the Final Rule.
NPS decided none of the changes submitted by CHAPA were warranted. The proposed rule is essentially the same as the preferred alternative from the EA. While NPS has reacted to the "letter" of the law, changes reflecting the intent of the law are minimal.
CHAPA believes the recommendations for changes to the preferred alternative we submitted in March remain appropriate as recommendations for changes to the proposed rule and have advised the NPS of our position. The goal of our recommendations is to establish an ORV rule that will both insure resource protection and allow maximum access for both pedestrians and ORVs.
We ask you to review the proposed rule and provide your comments to the NPS. Your individual participation in the proposed rule comment period is critical to the success of our efforts to improve access at the Seashore. Click here to open the rule making portalwhere you will be able to read the proposed rule, read comments submitted by others, and submit your comments electronically.
Click here to open or download CHAPA's Original Comments on February, 2016 EA.
Click here to open or download the entire February, 2016 EA in pdf format.
DATES: The public comment period will be open for 60 days. Comments must be received on or before midnight (Eastern Daylight Time) on October 21, 2016.
ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on the Proposed Rule, identified by the Regulation Identifier Number (RIN): 1024-AE33, by any of the following methods:
Mail or hand deliver to: Superintendent, Cape Hatteras National Seashore, 1401 National Park Drive, Manteo, North Carolina 27954
Comments submitted through the Federal eRulemaking portal, or submitted by mail must be entered, or postmarked, before midnight (Eastern Daylight Time) October 21, 2016. Comments submitted by hand delivery must be received by the close of business hours (5:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time) October 21, 2016. Comments will not be accepted by fax, email, or in any way other than those specified above, and bulk comments in any format (hard copy or electronic) submitted on behalf of others will not be accepted.
Answers to frequently asked questions are available here: https://www.nps.gov/caha/learn/news/16_051.htm.