Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Editor’s Desk No Reports Today
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NEWS AND NOTES
Department of the Interior San Antonio Missions Nominated As World Heritage Site
The United States is nominating the San Antonio Missions, consisting of most of San Antonio Missions National Historical Park and the Alamo, for inclusion on the World Heritage List, which recognizes the most significant cultural and natural sites on the planet.
“World Heritage Sites represent an incredible opportunity for the United States to tell the world the whole story of America and the remarkable diversity of our people and beauty of our land,” said Secretary Jewell. “The San Antonio Missions represent a vital part of our nation’s Latino heritage and the contributions of Latinos to the building of our country.”
Jewell credited former Secretary Ken Salazar, who visited San Antonio Missions in July 2012 to announce the department’s intention to move forward with the nomination, for playing a key role in making it possible.
This nomination will be considered for inscription on the World Heritage List by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in the summer of 2015. If approved by the World Heritage Committee, it would join the 21 sites in the U.S. already inscribed on the World Heritage List.
The UNESCO World Heritage List falls under the auspices of the World Heritage Convention, of which the United States was the prime architect. It is an international treaty for natural site conservation and cultural site preservation proposed by President Richard M. Nixon in 1972; the U.S. was the first nation to ratify it.
There are currently 981 sites in 160 of the 190 signatory countries. The list includes such iconic places as the Taj Mahal, Stonehenge and the Great Barrier Reef, as well as Yellowstone National Park, Grand Canyon National Park and the Statue of Liberty National Monument in the United States.
“World Heritage Sites draw visitors from around the world, providing not only prestige to local communities but also a boost to their economies,” Jewell noted.
The Department of the Interior is undertaking the nomination with the full cooperation and written support of all the property owners within the boundaries of the nominated area, including the National Park Service, the State of Texas, the Catholic Archdiocese of San Antonio, Bexar County, the City of San Antonio, the San Antonio River Authority, the Espada Ditch Company, the San Juan Ditch Water Supply Corporation, and Los Compadres de San Antonio Missions National Historical Park.
These owners, together with partner organizations, cooperated to prepare the nomination in consultation with the National Park Service’s Office of International Affairs, the principal technical agency for the U.S. Government’s participation in the Convention.
The nomination will be submitted through the U.S. Department of State to the offices of the World Heritage Centre in Paris, France. After reviews by World Heritage Centre staff and by the International Council for Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), it will be considered for inscription on the World Heritage List by the World Heritage Committee, which is a rotating body of 21 nations elected from among the signatories of the World Heritage Convention.
Inscription as a World Heritage Site does not impose any legal restrictions on property owners or neighbors of sites, nor does it give the United Nations any management authority or ownership rights in U.S. World Heritage Sites, which continue to be subject only to existing federal and local laws. The agreement of the property owner is required by U.S. law in order for a site in this country to be nominated to the World Heritage List.
As previously announced, the Department of the Interior plans to revise the candidate list, or Tentative List of potential future U.S. World Heritage nominations, by 2016. Interested parties may suggest properties for consideration at any time.
Click on this link to go to the “San Antonio Missions Quest for World Heritage Status” website.
Fire and Aviation Management
Tom Nichols To Retire
Tom Nichols, chief of the Fire and Aviation Management Division for the National Park Service at the Fire Management Program Center in Boise, Idaho, will conclude a 37-year career on January 31st.
“In addition to building on success at every level during his nearly 40-year career, Tom's exceptional leadership and talents have truly helped the NPS fire and aviation program rise to new levels," said Associate Director fir Visitor and Resource Protection Cam Sholly. "I especially want to thank Tom for his recent work in leading the division through one of the toughest financial periods in the history of the NPS fire program. His vision, focus, and collaborative style helped put the division back on a positive course which will carry long into the future.”
Tom began working for the National Park Service in 1977 as a seasonal fire effects monitor in the Division of Natural Resource Management in Sequoia and Kings Canyon Parks.
In 1979, he accepted a permanent position there, and over the next fifteen years was engaged in many new programs which are standard practices today, including the creation of the original prescribed burn boss course and task book certification process, the first NPS fuels management crew, the development of smoke monitoring methodologies and prescriptions, and the fire monitoring and burned area emergency rehabilitation manuals.
Following the 1988 Yellowstone area fires, Tom co-authored the environmental assessment which was used as a model by many parks to get their fire management programs back on-line.
In 1992, Tom moved to the old Western Region as the regional prescribed fire specialist and in 2000 became Pacific West Region's fire management officer. During this period, Tom worked to build stronger relationships between fire management and its agency and interagency partners. As an example, in 2002 he received the Crystal Owl Team Award from Harpers Ferry for assisting in the development and implementation of a joint prescribed fire training course for cultural and fire management staffs.
In 2001, Tom received a Superior Service Award, in part for rebuilding the region’s fire management program following the Servicewide prescribed fire moratorium as a result of the Cerro Grande fire in Bandelier National Monument. In 2002, Tom was honored to be selected as the fire management officer for Yosemite National Park and happy to be back in the field.
In 2005, Tom was selected as the deputy budget and planning program lead for the Fire Management Program Center, and in 2007 moved into his current position, managing the wildland fire, structural fire, and aviation management programs and the associated information technology, administration, and communication/education branches.
“I’ve been very privileged to have worked with so many wonderful people," he says. "Wildland fire, aviation, and structural fire management touch so many places and involve so many disciplines that my career has been full of challenges that were almost always a great pleasure with which to work. I have fond memories of many good friends I made along the way.”
Tom and his wife, Barbara, are planning to move back to the Sierra Nevadas, where they can explore the mountains and Tom can write letters to superintendents to complain about smoke from their prescribed fires. Tom may be contacted at email@example.com.
[Submitted by Roberta D'Amico, firstname.lastname@example.org, 208.387.5239]
Natural Resource Stewardship and Science Fall Issue Of Park Science Now Out
The fall 2013 edition of Park Science, the National Park Service’s research and resource management bulletin, has been posted online.
For a copy of this edition, click on the “More Information” link below. The print edition of Park Science should be delivered to parks and to recipients in general on or about February 7th.
The next issues available for general contributions are the summer and fall 2014 editions, with contributor's deadlines of June 1st and September 15th, respectively.
[Submitted by Jeff Selleck, Editor] More Information...
NPS Alumni Passing Of Deane Shilts
Deane Shilts, 86, a career National Park Service ranger who retired as chief ranger at Wind Cave in 1993, passed away on December 29th.
A memorial service to celebrate Deane's life was held in Pringle, South Dakota, on January 3rd. In lieu of flowers, it was Deane's wish that memorials be directed to the United Methodist Church in Pringle and the Battle Mountain Humane Society in Hot Springs, South Dakota. An online guest book may be signed at www.mccolleyschapels.com.
For a complete obituary, click on this link.
Northeast Region GS-1601-14 Regional Chief Of Maintenance (Detail)
Northeast Region is seeking candidates for a detail as regional chief of maintenance.
Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.
It closes on February 3rd.
Lake Meredith National Recreation Area (TX)
GS-0341-11 Administrative Officer
Lake Meredith National Recreation Area is recruiting for a chief of administration. This is a permanent full time position. The chief of administration supervises four permanent employees.
Lake Meredith National Recreation Area consists of 44,978 acres of federally-owned land. The Canadian River carved a narrow, steep-walled canyon from 200 to 300 feet deep and up to two miles wide. The resulting exposed geologic features, known as the Canadian River breaks, are a dominant landscape feature in the national recreation area. Construction of Sanford Dam, which began in 1962 on the Canadian River between the canyon walls, created Lake Meredith, which began to fill in 1965.
The park oversees Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument, which totals about 1,371 acres and shows evidence of human habitation for 13,000 years. It is noted for the more than 700 flint quarries that were used to provide raw materials for the manufacture of tools and weapons. It also contains the only known remaining village type-site for the Antelope Creek people and a series of petroglyphs.
Nearby Fritch, Texas, is a small town of approximately 2,200 people and is located in the Panhandle of Texas. Fritch has a grocery store, several restaurants, bank, pharmacy, clinic, and K-12 public schools. Additional services are available in Borger, Texas, which is located 12 miles east of Fritch. Borger has a population of 13,300 and offers K-12 schools, a community college, restaurants, shopping, movie theater, hospital and specialized clinics. Amarillo, Texas, is located approximately 40 miles to the south and has all the amenities of a major city with a population of 190,000, including an international airport.
The Panhandle of Texas has a low cost of living, no state income taxes, good medical facilities and friendly people. The area offers a wide range of outdoor recreational activities, such as boating, fishing, camping, hunting, off-road vehicle driving, hiking, swimming, and sightseeing. If you are interested in joining our great management team please see our announcement on USA Jobs at the “More Information” link below.
For additional information please contact Superintendent Robert Maguire at (806) 857-0300.
The announcement closes on January 31st.
Rocky Mountain National Park (CO)
GS-0408-11 Ecologist (Lateral)
Rocky Mountain National Park is seeking candidates for a lateral reassignment to a term, fulltime, subject to furlough GS-11 ecologist position to work on the Grand Ditch Breach Restoration Project located in the northwest corner of the park.
Travel, transportation, and relocation expenses may be paid if the person for the position is from outside the local commuting area and is otherwise eligible for reimbursement of relocation expenses under the current Federal Travel Regulations; however, there will be no guaranteed home sale.
The person selected will serve as the project lead for the National Park Service for all aspects of the restoration project where natural resources have been heavily impacted. The employee will be responsible for:
- Preparing, developing and implementing a restoration plan, contracting of restoration implementation, providing technical review of all restoration-related documents, and serving as the project manager and point-of-contact for restoration actions in this project.
- Developing plans for work to be performed and schedules for work accomplishment, ensuring all activities are consistent with the final environmental impact statement and other relevant laws and policies.
- Interacting with multiple park divisions, other NPS personnel, interested stakeholders, and other government agencies.
Rocky Mountain National Park is a living showcase of the grandeur of the Rocky Mountains. With elevations ranging from 8,000 feet in the wet, grassy valleys to 14,259 feet at the weather-ravaged top of Longs Peak, the park has glacier sculpted valleys, rugged gorges, alpine lakes, and vast areas of alpine tundra. Trail Ridge Road, the highest paved continuous road in the United States; it stays above tree line for 11 miles and reaches 12,183 feet in elevation. Elk, deer, bighorn sheep, moose, coyotes, and smaller animals are found throughout the park, as well as threatened and endangered species, such as the greenback cutthroat trout and boreal toad. Interested applicants are strongly encouraged to research the area. Information on Rocky Mountain National Park is available at www.nps.gov/romo.
This position is located on the east side of the park. The nearest community is Estes Park, which is approximately two miles from the park headquarters. Estes Park includes a school (grades kindergarten-12), post office, grocery stores, restaurants, medical centers, shops, etc.
If you are interested in the position, please contact Ben Bobowski, chief of resource stewardship, at 970-586-1350, Ben_Bobowski@nps.gov, or Scott Esser, ecologist, at 970-586-1394, Scott_Esser@nps.gov .
Applicants should submit the following:
- Resume/ application
- A current SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action (and SF-50 confirming reassignment eligibility if different/not current)
- A copy of your current or most recent performance appraisal
Email documents to Maria_Rivero@nps.gov or mail them to Human Resources Office, Rocky Mountain National Park, Attn: Maria Rivero, 1000 US HWY 36, Estes Park, CO 80517.
Applications/resumes must be received by close of business (4:30 MST), Friday, January 31st.