Washington, DC – Congresswoman Stacey E. Plaskett, a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, released the following statement after sending a letter to members of President Biden’s transition team at the Department of Interior thanking them for meeting with her office to discuss the needs and the impacts of the National Park Service (NPS) operation in our community:
“In February my office met with the officials of the U.S. Department of Interior to discuss the Biden administration’s priorities and the very important opportunities and challenges for the NPS and to make sure that the NPS were committed to understanding the needs and the impacts of NPS operations in our community.
“Under the Trump administration, Interior officials not only cancelled a townhall scheduled in 2020 with the people of St. John and the National Parks but resisted sharing or engaging myself or other local officials in the negotiations the Department was having with the operators of Caneel Bay resort. My letter to Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Shannon Estenoz reiterated my request to the previous administration for a public meeting to speak directly to the people of St. John and the Virgin Islands in the form of a townhall or similar forum regarding the future of the Caneel Bay site. I believe that a public meeting could serve as a good faith effort on the part of the Department of Interior to foster a stronger relationship between the National Park Service and Virgin Islanders.”