A National Park Service ranger claims the Obama administration forced sequester cuts that were unnecessary. The unnamed whistleblower maintains the agency was overruled after presenting a plan to deal with sequester cuts in a manner that had minimal impact on the public.
The park ranger came forward after the Obama administration allegedly resisted efforts by the National Park Service to reduce the impact of the sequester on visitors. The US park ranger also stated during an interview with Fox News that the White House told the agency to cancel interpretation services, tours, special events, and other educational services. National parks are extremely busy during the spring and summers as outdoor enthusiasts and families take advantage of the free or low-cost attractions.
The National Park Service ranger said, “Apparently, they want the public to feel the pain,” when discussing the allegedly forced sequester cuts. Park service officials have warned the public about campground closures at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, delayed access to Yosemite and Yellowstone National Parks, and a reduction in hours at the Grand Canyon Visitor Center. Tens of thousands of Americans who have already booked vacations at the major national parks could be negatively impacted by the changes.
The White House claims such National Park Service cuts were needed due to the $85 billion in sequester cuts. The park service is reportedly experiencing an across-the-board 5 percent budget cut. Republicans and some independent voters are feel President Barack Obama is inflating the impact of the reduction in spending increases for political gain.
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, a leaked Agriculture Department email also claims the White House applied pressure for sequester cuts that would be felt by the public. The Obama administration email to the Agriculture Department appears to indicate that the agency was warned not to deviate from the sting that was anticipated to be felt by the cuts.
The regional field officer maintained that the agency had found ways to make the necessary cuts without such a major impact, but was not given permission to follow through with their plan. National Park Service memos currently circulating reportedly indicate that the federal agency was instructed to make it a priority to tell the public how the sequester cuts had impacted them.