Some folks were concerned when the U.S. House of Representatives did a collective shrug of its shoulders over Rep. Duncan Hunter's legislative maneuvering to turn part of Channel Islands National Park into a private hunting preserve for the military.
Well, over in the Senate the folks seem to have a better perspective on how our national parks should be managed, and I'd wager that Congressman Hunter's poorly conceived proposal will be gutted from the final defense appropriations legislation.
Lending support to my feeling is news that National Park Service Deputy Director Steve Martin has told a Senate subcommittee that the Park Service opposes Rep. Hunter's proposal for Santa Rosa Island.
"So long as a hunting operation continues, 90 percent of the island will be off-limits for general recreation for four to five months of each year," Martin told the Senate national parks subcommittee. "Removal of the non-native deer and elk is necessary for native plants and animals to flourish."
In the wake of Martin's testimony, subcommittee chairman Craig Thomas of Wyoming added his opposition to the plan.
"While we need to do all we can for our troops' morale, welfare and recreation, turning over park lands for the military doesn't seem to me to be the way to go about it," said the senator.