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Biscayne National Park

General Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement

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Dear Friends of Biscayne National Park,

I want to express my sincere appreciation for your dedication to and interest in the future of Biscayne National Park. We have been working for more than a decade in developing a general management plan for Biscayne National Park and you have provided us with a wealth of information and input that is heartfelt and shows a deep sense of park stewardship. Biscayne National Park is your park and we are listening to your concerns and working with you to ensure the park is managed as best as it possibly can be for today and the tomorrows to follow. This newsletter describes your most frequent comments on the supplemental draft plan and the next steps in the process.

Most recently we received your thoughts about two new alternatives (6 and 7). The new alternatives were developed in consultation with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. We received numerous comments and requests for further clarification about the size, location, and need for a potential special recreation zone, number of fishing permits in the special recreation zone, education and law enforcement, visitor access and safety, and the impacts to fishers and the local economy. This newsletter briefly summarizes your comments on these concerns and provides some additional clarification. A full summary of all public comments will follow as part of the final general management plan.

A number of you requested the chance for additional civic engagement in the development of this plan. We also have new information to share on the alternatives. Therefore, we would like to invite you to attend one of our focused public workshops this September for more specific input. The workshops will be an opportunity to express your thoughts comparing alternatives 4, 6, and 7, especially since alternative 7 did not receive many comments in the last public review.

We look forward to hearing your ideas and opinions an would appreciate receiving any comments you may have by October 10, 2014, the end of the public comment period. Thank you for your continued participation and interest in shaping the future of Biscayne National Park.

Sincerely,

Brian Carlstrom
Superintendent