LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD DURING THE PUBLIC COMMENTS PERIOD FOR THE PROPOSED BISCAYNE NATIONAL PARK MANAGEMENT PLAN
Biscayne National Park's General Management Plan / Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement is now available for review and comment. This plan details the National Park Service proposals for long-term management of the park. They are holding Public Meetings this week at various locations in the area. There is still time to attend one of the public sessions or to comment online.
December 10, 2013
Florida City's City Hall
404 West Palm Drive
Florida City, FL 33034
December 11, 2013
Holiday Inn Key Largo
99701 Overseas Highway
Key Largo, FL 33037
These public meetings will provide an opportunity for you to learn about the supplemental draft plan and to submit verbal and/or written comments. Presentations, exhibits, and park staff will be available to facilitate understanding of the plan.
Biscayne National Park is one of the largest marine parks in the national park system and is visited by an average of more than 500,000 people each year. They have been working for more than a decade to develop a General Management Plan to guide park operations for years to come. The goals of the plan are to provide opportunities for diverse visitor experiences, enable coral reef habitat restoration, and provide for preservation of the park's natural and cultural resources. In August 2011, they presented to the public the Draft General Management Plan / Environmental Impact Statement. After receiving more than 18,000 comments from the public, they began to evaluate a number of additional management actions to achieve the plan's goals.
As a result of that evaluation, they are now presenting a Supplemental Draft General Management Plan / Environmental Impact Statement with two new alternatives. Alternatives 6 and 7 were developed in consultation with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA Fisheries).
The two new alternatives, including the new Agency Preferred Alternative 6, offer a unique and innovative approach to managing marine ecosystems-a Special Recreation Zone. This new concept aims to accomplish the same objectives as the original preferred alternative, while allowing limited fishing opportunities. Their partner agencies believe that providing some access, while prohibiting certain activities that are most damaging to the coral reef system, will enable the, to simultaneously achieve their visitor experience and resource protection goals.
Click HERE to see the proposed plan