Public Input Encouraged in Badlands Planning Effort
Contact: Paige Baker PhD, (605) 433-5280
Omaha, Neb. - The National Park Service (NPS) has recently begun working on a General Management Plan (GMP) for the South Unit of Badlands National Park. The NPS and Oglala Sioux Tribe are preparing preliminary alternatives for management of the South Unit and invite the public to submit comments and suggestions.
In 2000, the NPS requested and received public comments on a GMP inclusive of both the North and South Units of the park. However, in 2004, the NPS decided to complete separate plans for each unit; the two GMPs together will describe a plan for management of Badlands National Park for the next 15-20 years. Earlier comments elicited related to operations, cultural and natural resources management, visitor education and experience, and access. A synopsis of comments from the 2000-2003 planning process is available on the park website at http://www.nps.gov/badl/parkmgmt/planning.htm.
At this time, the NPS South Unit GMP team welcomes new issues or concerns about management of the South Unit by contacting Badlands National Park Superintendent Dr. Paige Baker by telephone at 605-433-5280, by mail at Badlands National Park, 25216 Ben Reifel Road, P.O. Box 6, Interior, SD 57750, by email. The South Unit GMP team intends to have a newsletter describing draft preliminary alternatives available to the public by the end of summer 2007. The public will then again be invited to comment specifically on those draft alternatives at public meetings, by mail, and via other collection methods.
Did You Know?
Badlands National Park maintains an open backcountry policy for exploration of its rugged landscape. While the park has no formal backcountry permit or reservation system, hikers are advised to stop at the Ben Reifel Visitor Center for planning assistance, safety tips, directions, and regulations.