U.S. Senator Hagan (D-NC) joined U.S. Senator Burr (R-NC) in a legislative move to withdraw national park protections for baby birds and sea turtles endangered by off-road vehicles on North Carolina’s Outer Banks. The two senators introduced a bill (S. 1557) that if passed, would subvert current ORV management regulations that were ruled “fair and just” by a U.S. District Court on April 30, 2008.
The current beach driving restrictions that were agreed upon by all interested parties and ruled fair by a federal judge, affect only limited areas within the Cape Hatteras National Seashore and primarily during the bird breeding season, between April and August. Many miles of beach have remained open to ORVs and pedestrians throughout the breeding season, providing ample access to the national seashore. Visitation to the seashore even increased in 2009 during months affected by the consent agreement according to park service statistics.
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