Theodore Roosevelt National Park is in the process of putting together a “livestock” management plan for the wild horses that call the park home.
So what SHOULD you comment?
If you do not understand the NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) process, please watch our presentation that explains that: https://chwha.org/events/. This post will assume you understand the NEPA process.
Theodore Roosevelt National Park has stated that they are PROPOSING AN ACTION: Phased Reduction of Herds to No Livestock
BECAUSE of their PROPOSED ACTION, the park is required to follow the guidelines of NEPA which include:
#1 – they have to look at a “no action” alternative – that is why we have Alternative A – No Action Alternative: Continued herd management under the 1978 EA and 1970 Management Plan
They also have to consider REASONABLE alternatives. They have only given us one: Alternative B – Action Alternative: Expedited Reduction of Herds to No Livestock
You have until January 31, 2023 to tell them WHAT ELSE THEY SHOULD CONSIDER.
From the parks newsletter:
Comments that cannot be considered include comments for or against an action without any reasoning, comments that only agree or disagree with NPS policy, comments without justification or supporting data, comments that take the form of vague, open-ended questions, and form letters. Comments are not accepted by fax, e-mail or in any other form.
So what CAN we comment? The park has told us that too:
Public participation is an important element of the planning process, and we welcome your comments, concerns, issues, suggestions, and potential topics for consideration. You are invited to submit comments on the information in this newsletter, the preliminary alternatives, proposed action, and what the EA should address and analyze. Comments that provide relevant and new information with sufficient detail are most useful. Comments that will be considered are those that present information that can be used when developing alternatives, present reasonable alternatives, or present information that can be used when the NPS considers impacts of alternatives.
Think of it this way:
The park is about to do research on what the best plan is for the wild horses that call Theodore Roosevelt National Park home.
WHAT OTHER REASONABLE ALTERNATIVES DO YOU WANT THEM TO CONSIDER?
WHAT PROOF/DATA/SUPPORTING DOCUMENTATION DO YOU HAVE TO SHOW WHY THEY SHOULD CONSIDER YOUR REASONABLE ALTERNATIVE?
This is NOT an argument to be won. If we all comment the same thing letting the park know what we disagree with 36 CFR § 2.60 – they don’t care – they told us that clearly.
PLEASE DO NOT share your stories about the horses here – that is NOT what they are asking for. They don’t care – they told us that. They want alternatives to consider – period. Another organization is asking for those – NOT THE PARK!
ALL THE PARK WANTS IS WHAT THEY SHOULD CONSIDER.
They are about to start researching those options.
We have less than 14 days to tell them.
We will be spending time over the next few weeks sharing things that you can use to write a good comment letter. A good place to start is with what American Wild Horse Campaign gave us a few weeks ago to use as comments: https://secure.everyaction.com/uPCRult4YUaFYzVPO7liHA2?fbclid=IwAR20QUZGXcOAB3tr_1cL62X_wwe2CBCigPL1mnap_heRVQ01MAJKC40Syzs
If you already sent in your comments – feel free to send more as we go along. No one said you only had ONE chance to send in comments. Think of it more like speak now or forever hold your peace. The Environmental Assessment process starts after the park finishes their review of the comments. When they come back and tell us WHAT they will be doing, it will be too late for you to tell them what you wish they would have considered.
Please share your comments no later than January 31, 2023, online through the PEPC website at: https://parkplanning.nps.gov/LP
Or in writing to:
Theodore Roosevelt National Park
PO Box 7
Medora, ND 58645
Thank you for your support!
Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates is committed to advocating for a wild horse management plan and protection for these unique wild horses that call Theodore Roosevelt National Park home! We are fighting for a management plan that is guided by science especially when it comes to decisions regarding the removal of horses and the administration of birth control. Many other wild horse management plans have proven to be successful with their science-based plans. We are asking for the same for this amazing group of wild horses that call Theodore Roosevelt National Park home.