Rep. Walter Jones Files Bill To Overturn Cape Hatteras Driving Ban

HATTERAS, N.C. (AP) -- A North Carolina congressman has filed a bill to overturn new rules on beach driving along the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

Republican Rep. Walter Jones filed the bill Tuesday, saying the federal government should remember that Cape Hatteras was established as a recreational area for people who need access to the beach.

Under rules established last month by the National Park Service, off-road vehicles are allowed year-round on 28 miles of the seashore and on 13 additional miles between mid-September and mid-March. The remaining 26 miles are off limits to vehicles.

Permit fees are $50 a week or $120 a year for beach drivers.

Cape Hatteras group has sued to rescind the rules, which were adopted to protect sea turtles and birds.


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  • by Dick Jones Location: High Point NC on Mar 9, 2012 at 05:37 AM
    It's obvious to me many of the posters have never been to Hatteras Island. The island is 55 miles long and only about 15 miles are ever available to drive on. Many of the closures involve pedestrians as well as vehicles. Almost half the island is Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge and a lot more is almost allways closed because of beach erosion issues or turtle or bird closings. The beach driving is highly regulated with speed limits and restrictions as to where you can drive. The main interest in driving the beach is to access it for fishing and the Cape Point is the number one surf fishing location in the world. Please at least visit this island before your from an opinion based on prejudice against a politician or social class of people. The birds cited for the reasons for the closure are not endangered and in the estreme northern fringe of their nesting range. In a normal year, less than five fledglings are produced on the island most of the other chicks killed by competing plover pairs or storms. The average cost to taxpayers to monitor these birds is about $1,000,000 each. By your coments, many of you are reinforcing the sterotype you often complain about.
  • by Jackson@Hatteras Sands Location: Hattera Village Nc on Mar 6, 2012 at 07:51 PM
    You gotta love um,people thats dont live here'', If they only knew how we need help to keep this for them and their children as the time to enjoy nature as it is, without pollution from big cities, always a fresh breeze from the ocean, Oh and by the way, turtle eggs are a delicency and big money market in some contries,what are we not see'ing here ?
  • by Barbara Location: Washington on Mar 5, 2012 at 09:42 AM
    Might as well close the Outer Banks beach access down, build some oil wells off shore. At least the locals will have somewhere to work. Is there any group out there fighting this mess? If North Carolina wants me to pay a beach fee, how about lowering it, I already pay enought gas tax. How about the campers that are dragging their coolers, tents, and chairs over the sand dune, are they going to be charged a fee. They may destroy a turlte nest.
    • reply
      by Jackson@Hatteras Sands on Mar 6, 2012 at 07:53 PM in reply to Barbara
      And then one day' no pets on the beach anymore...
  • by James Hilliard Location: NC on Mar 2, 2012 at 05:44 PM
    For those of you who do not have any knowledge of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area , here is the history. The full name of the “Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area” is historically accurate and serves to remind us today of the unique recreational heritage of the first national seashore. The founding pioneers called it by this name at the official dedication ceremony. Preserving this name will help future generations understand the history, tradition and recreational purpose of the “Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area.” A study of history reveals the importance of including the words “Recreational Area” today. • June 29, 1940, Congress amends the enabling legislation and the words “Recreational Area” are added to further emphasize the recreational nature of the seashore as a destination for beachgoers and fishermen. • On May 10, 1954, the National Park Service gave administrative permission for the staff to use the shorter name “Cape Hatteras National Seashore” in all but the most formal memoranda and legal documents in place of the more cumbersome “Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area.” This administrative short cut created a nickname, but never changed the official name. • At the official dedication ceremony on April 24, 1958, representatives of both the Department of Interior and the National Park Service repeatedly referred to it as the “Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area.” • This is supposed to be for all to enjoy. Just because the employees of the NPS and DOI can not comprehend what they read does not give them the right to close A Recreational Area!!!!!!!!!
  • by humphreypink Location: pink hill nc state on Feb 29, 2012 at 02:27 PM
    ihave been frinds with mr jones dad along time good mam and so is sonrep walter jones jr he isgoodfor this state nc he is one of the best you will ever have you shoud love him he has done alout for nc
  • by I commend you! Location: eastern nc on Feb 29, 2012 at 02:20 PM
    I wish all you liberals would get a life! I have lived here all my life, I appreciate my beaches and surroundings! I believe and support beach driving. And, I agree all out of towners if anyone should be taxed by permit for driving on the beach. Oh, by the way I ran over and ant today..want to start closing the roads, they have a life too you know. Get a job!
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Mar 2, 2012 at 10:54 AM in reply to I commend you!
      There not almost extinct like turtles and to run over a a baby horse! People can't drive on the road let so I don't expect them to know any better on a beach. I am very educated and have a job, what are you doing up here?
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Mar 2, 2012 at 03:44 PM in reply to
        The very first word of your sentence in incorrect. Where did you get this so called edumacation? just to help you along..... They're, not there.
  • by is this his best? on Feb 29, 2012 at 01:54 PM
    The country is going somewhere in a handbasket and he files bills (most never pass) for local ideas like Freedom Fries (because he does not know the difference between France and Belgium) and now this. Time to lead or leave!
    • reply
      by You are so right on Feb 29, 2012 at 02:11 PM in reply to is this his best?
      This bill will never pass and all these folks thinking it will are like cows on the way to slaughter. The beach will be closed to vehicles and you fried food eating, tobacco chewing, beach driving freeloaders will need to find something else to cry about. BTW, surf casting is for trailer trash - the big boys run boats for our fish. Enjoy your summer
  • by rapper Location: snow hill on Feb 29, 2012 at 09:01 AM
    Only emergency and official vehicles should be allowed to drive on the beach . Walk if you want to get to the ocean !!
    • reply
      by Barbara on Feb 29, 2012 at 09:49 AM in reply to rapper
      Please give me a break, have you ever tried to roll a wheelchair over the sand dunes. For thirty years my husband and I have been driving on the beach. It worked so well for us, now I have to pay to sit on the beach. What are my taxes going for? I promise you I have not brothered those birds or turtles. Wake us Americans, the Government officials will take everything they can from us. Don't guess it matters any more, cannot afford the gas anymore to ride to the Outer Banks for a day of relaxation.
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Feb 29, 2012 at 11:45 AM in reply to Barbara
        Barbara....maybe this thing can be turned around and you guys can get back to enjoying what is suppose to be a recreational park. Pay "rapper boy" no mind.....his name speaks for itself.
      • reply
        by h8liars on Feb 29, 2012 at 12:06 PM in reply to Barbara
        Turtle eggs are hidden under the sand, you can't see them when you drive over the nest. I understand your delemma and all and appreciate it but please don't think you don't affect nature when you drive down the beach in some way....
        • reply
          by REM on Feb 29, 2012 at 12:44 PM in reply to h8liars
          MANY animals were killed and harvested during the process of making that computer that you used to type that in. I'm all for preserving and respecting nature, but not at the expense of ACTUALLY ENJOYING IT. If that is your mentality, then you should really not drive a car. You know how many thousands of insects you kill that way? And trust me, insects are 1,000,000 times more important than turtles.
    • reply
      by nightrain on Feb 29, 2012 at 10:41 AM in reply to rapper
      With a screen name like "rapper" I'll assume you're just mad because your sedan, with low profile tires and 22 inch rims, keeps getting stuck out there. Right?
    • reply
      by h8liars on Feb 29, 2012 at 11:50 AM in reply to rapper
      Finally someone who truly understands and appreciates nature and its beauty! Poor turtle eggs hidden under the sand get crushed by stupid maniacs driving on the beach.
      • reply
        by G on Feb 29, 2012 at 12:34 PM in reply to h8liars
        There are thousands of miles of beach in the US you can't drive on, and probably around 200 that you can drive on the beach. Driving on the beach is an activity that many enjoy for various reasons (fishing, to get away from it all, birding, etc.) Being able to drive on the beach brings thousands of visitors and millions of dollars to the coastal economy.
      • reply
        by REM on Feb 29, 2012 at 12:44 PM in reply to h8liars
        You don't live in the same reality as the rest of us do you?
        • reply
          by h8liars on Feb 29, 2012 at 01:08 PM in reply to REM
          I live in reality while the rest of you slumber.... NO ONE needs to drive a vehicle on the beach how about that poor horse that was pregnant and ran over her until she died -- this happened just last year....
        • reply
          by REM on Feb 29, 2012 at 02:49 PM in reply to REM
          Oh God here we go.... Please spare us the lectures about hemp products, oil companies, and Greenpeace please.
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Mar 1, 2012 at 09:49 AM in reply to h8liars
        Don't go to the beach much do you? Have you ever seen a turtle nest? Well, they are pretty easy to spot, and the eggs are not "hidden" under the sand. they are under the sand, but the nest is pretty obvious. So here is an idea. Keep people like you away from the beaches, period. Wow, giving a turtle lecture by someone who has no idea what a turtle nest looks like, or which turtles that nest there.
      • reply
        by local on Mar 20, 2012 at 10:04 AM in reply to h8liars
        Just so your aware, when turtles lay eggs they leave a trail directly from the nest back to the ocean, these nests are clearly visible, which enables the nps to promptly fence them off, therefore making them completely avoidable to pedestrians & vehicles. Baby turtles are more likely to be killed by seagulls then by humans, perhaps we should ban seagulls?
    • reply
      by obamanot on Feb 29, 2012 at 02:16 PM in reply to rapper
      Being your a wanna be rapper,you should google Steven Crowder Mr.America!
  • by Anonymous on Feb 29, 2012 at 08:56 AM
    Come on Walter, file a bill about the corruption on wall street. The banks killing the customers with red tape. Insider trading by politicians, illegal immigration. Schools going down the tubes or is driving on a beach what really we need to focus on.
  • by gary on Feb 29, 2012 at 08:50 AM
    Where are my comments moderator? None were against policy
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