Letter Urges National Park Service, Office Of Management And Budget To Allocate Funding To Address Drought Conditions Affecting Lake Mead And Help Re-open Boat Ramps
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV) led a group of Senate colleagues, including Senators Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ), and Mark Kelly (D-AZ) in a letter to National Park Service Director Charles F. Sams III and Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young urging them to use appropriated funds to address the extreme drought conditions and boat ramp closures at Lake Mead.
“Lake Mead National Recreation Area is our country’s first national recreation area and the fifth most-visited park in the National Park System,” the senators wrote. “Visitors to Lake Mead play a significant role in the local economy, supporting small businesses and workers who depend on robust outdoor recreation tourism for their livelihoods. The low water levels have seriously impacted recreation, particularly with the closure of all but one boat launch ramp at the lake, putting businesses and jobs at risk.”
In the letter, the senators requested the National Park Service use a portion of the $1.5 billion appropriated by Congress for expenses related to natural disasters to address the drought-related boat ramp closures for the millions of visitors and residents who enjoy outdoor recreation at Lake Mead each year. They also note that similar funding has already been distributed to other national parks facing similar issues.
“It has been reported that funding from the FY23 omnibus for NPS disaster relief has already been distributed to Denali National Park and Preserve in Alaska and Yellowstone National Park in Montana to address infrastructure repairs due to landslides and severe flooding, respectively,” they continued. “We ask that you give the same consideration to the Lake Mead National Recreation Area and provide funding for critical infrastructure needs to protect the lake and ensure the recreation area, including the boat launch ramps around the lake, are accessible to all visitors.”
The full letter can be found here.
Senator Rosen has been leading the fight to address the drought and re-open the boat ramps at Lake Mead. Earlier this year, Senator Rosen sent a letter to the National Park Service opposing the agency’s proposed plan to permanently close boat launch ramps at Lake Mead. Last year, Senator Rosen sent a letter to NPS Director Charles Sams requesting an update on the actions they are taking to re-open the boat ramps at Lake Mead.