Utah national parks affected by shutdown will get federal help 'within days'

Shutdown spares federal park rangers at site in Trump hotel

If the government shutdown continues, Bhatti told CNN the group will be looking for more parks to clean and more ways to help areas impacted by the shutdown.

Across the country, dozens of their colleagues in the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association were doing the same at national parks closed or partially closed by the shutdown.

"We are taking this extraordinary step to ensure that parks are protected, and that visitors can continue to access parks with limited basic services", the statement said.

Having planned her Utah trip six months ago and finding so much redrock country closed when she and her husband arrived, she said she was angry about the shutdown.

That's according to House Democrats who were notified Sunday of the department's plan to use Federal Land and Recreation Enhancement money.

Still, the National Park Service did note that the investigation into the death of the Yosemite visitor was affected by the shutdown.

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In Tennessee, a father-daughter duo has been tackling the litter left behind on the trails of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

During the lapse of appropriations, the men and women of the National Park Service who have remained on duty have gone to incredible lengths to keep America's iconic national parks as accessible as possible to the American public.

In the coming days the NPS will begin to use these funds to clean up trash that has built up at numerous parks, clean and maintain restrooms, bring additional law enforcement rangers into parks to patrol accessible areas, and to restore accessibility to areas that would typically be accessible this time of year.

Large signs at the entrance to the visitors center and entrance to the park state the Park Service couldn't fully staff the park, but it was not feasible to close or prohibit access to all parks.

Citing an unnamed Park Service official, the Post reported that the Interior Department's solicitor had authorized the memo.

The duty is usually assigned to employees of the park.

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Overall, that's a miniscule fraction of the more than 330 million people who visited the 418 sites in the National Park System in 2017, according to National Park Service data.

Amidst all of the destruction and despair that is ravaging numerous national parks, the Joshua Tree local community is truly showing exemplary support and taking matters into their own hands.

"It's incredibly concerning that the Acting Interior Secretary is putting political pressure on superintendents to keep parks open at the expense of parks' long-term needs and protection", Pierno said.

Sunday's announcement was met with criticism from some corners.

Over the weekend, Trump threatened to escalate the situation by using his presidential powers to declare a national emergency in an apparent bid to bypass Congress to secure funding for his border wall. "For those national parks that don't collect fees, they will now be in the position of competing for the same inadequate pot of money to protect their resources and visitors".

The Journal contributed to this article.

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