(Lack of) Public Process

Directors Order 8.2 states:
Restrictions on appropriate uses should be minimal:

·         Restrictions placed on recreational uses that have otherwise been found to be appropriate will be limited to the minimum necessary to protect park resources and values, and promote visitor safety and enjoyment. Any restriction of appropriate recreational use will be limited to what is necessary to protect park resources and values, to promote visitor safety and enjoyment, or to meet park management needs.  8.2.2

·         Any closures or restrictions-other than those imposed by law-must be consistent with applicable laws, regulations, and policies, and require a written determination by the superintendent that such measures are needed to protect public health and safety; prevent unacceptable impacts to park resources or values.

·         Any restrictions imposed will be fully explained to visitors and the public.  Visitors will be given appropriate information on how to keep adverse impacts to a minimum and how to enjoy the safe and lawful use of the parks.

Clearly, the four day a week closure does not meet these standards. There never was a public process as access was slowly restricted over the past decade, not during the trial period, and not at the end of the trial.
There is no written determination that the closure is needed to protect public health and safety.
The restrictions have never been fully explained to visitors and the public, and in fact the parks position has always been strictly financial.

Furthermore, a public process would eliminate the bad feelings and frustration that led to demonstrations last April. Instead, local Park officials took photos of the demonstration and have expressed bitterness toward the protesters.
Arbitrarily closing 4 days a week regardless of weather does not meet the standard of closing for visitor safety.  In 2009, there were over 60 days that the road was closed during the 7 month winter period despite clear roads and no drifting or avalanche threat.

ONP claims a Hurricane Ridge "Winter Use Plan" is in the planning pipeline, for completion in 7-10 years.  That's not good enough.

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