Republicans on the House Natural Resources Committee are investigating reports that the National Park Service is closing private and non profit enterprises as well as kicking out homeowners who live on park property. Mallory Micetich, spokeswoman for the Republicans on the committee has said that National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis, was asked to keep all correspondence as to the closures ordered by the NPS.
The committee also wants to know how much money was spend building barricades and guarding private businesses they want shuttered.
Although many of the decisions on closures are left to the local manager of the park, the Citizen Times of North Carolina reports that the local ranger said he received his orders to close the inn directly from Washington.
Specifically, they are looking into the case of the Pigsah Inn, a private concern located alongside the Blue Ridge Parkway, belonging to the NPS which was left open. Out side his establishment are three patrol cars and 5 officers. Normally there are no NPS employees on the site at all. The owner, Bruce O'Connell, has hired a lawyer and plans on filing a restraining order against the NPS.
Another area of concern is the Lake Mead, Nevada area, where homeowners are being driven out of homes they own outright by the NPS. Ralph and Joyce Spencer, ages 80 and 77 respectively, were uncerimoniously told to leave their home of many years and not to return until the budget is resolved.
Note: The White House also sits on NPS property. Provocative.
NBC 10 reports from Philadelphia that the famous City Tavern Restaurant was told to close because it sits on the Independence National Historical Park.
Republicans argue that these heinous acts are orchestrated by the Obama administration in an effort to win political points. There have been 27 prior closures of the government and all outdoor monuments, private businesses, and homeowners have never been subjected to this treatment before. Democrats closed the government 7 times during the 8 years of the Reagan presidency.
"Many of these non-federally funded sites exist throughout the United States and operate with no staff or resources from the National Park Service. This is yet another example of the Obama administration attempting to make the government shutdown as painful as possible and forcing closures of private and nonprofit operators that did not happen during previous government shutdowns."
The NPS has gone so far as to close a portion of the Atlantic Ocean off the Florida Bay and they have prevented chartered fishing boats from plying their trade.