(PartiallyPolitics.com) – Republicans led by Dan Newhouse, R-Wash., the chairman of the Congressional Western Caucus have been urging the Biden administration to allow the public more time to express their concerns about the proposal of releasing grizzly bear populations in northern Washington.
The group of Republican lawmakers sent a letter on Friday to Charles Sams, the National Park Service (NPS) Director, and Martha Williams, the director of the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) calling for the time period in which the public could comment on the proposal to be extended to 180 days. They have also called for agencies to host more in-person meetings for community members who could be affected by the proposal.
In a statement, Newhouse pointed out that many residents in the area have expressed concerns about grizzlies being introduced in the North Cascades, as they are perceived to be dangerous to nearby communities. However, despite the opposition expressed by local communities, the Biden administration was continuing with their plan to have these populations introduced to the area. This was why they were calling for the period of public comment to be extended so that local people could have the necessary time to respond to the plan.
The NPS and FWS joint proposal was released last month and it includes a plan that would reintroduce grizzly bear populations to the North Cascades National Park in Washington. There are three different options in the proposal, two of which would help restore the population of the species and one where the current management practices would continue to be used without the reintroduction of the predator.
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