May 23, 2017  
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Facts relevant to Trump's review of Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument
Facts relevant to Trump's review of Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument
The Trump Administration is reviewing the Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument (KWWNM) created in 2016. President Trump wants to rescind national monuments, reduce their size, and/or open them to uses such as mining, oil and gas extraction, and logging.

Among other criteria, the review will assess if there was significant public input prior to monument designation, if there is currently public support, and if the monument is economically beneficial.

Fact: KWWNM has had extensive public input
• 13,000 people have signed petitions supporting the national monument
• 1,400 Mainers attended a meeting about KWWNM at UMaine where support was overwhelming
• U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin hosted a meeting where local support was overwhelming
• Scores of meetings have been held in the region with elected officials, businesses, citizens, etc.

Fact: KWWNM has extensive public support
• All statistically legitimate polls show strong majority public support for KWWNM
• Many former opponents are now supporting KWWNM
• A new group, Friends of KWWNM, is garnering even more public support
• 19 local officials sent a letter urging Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke “to do everything in your power to ensure that this Monument is a success,” signers included a majority of the Select Boards of 3 local towns
• Katahdin Area Chamber of Commerce has strongly and consistently supported the monument
• 200+ businesses in the greater Katahdin region support the national monument

Fact: KWWNM has bipartisan political support
• U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R), who previously opposed KWWNM: “I intend to support efforts to make the Monument a success and to help the Katahdin region thrive and chart a better economic future. I believe that any effort to rescind the designation at this point would be a mistake.”

• U.S. Sen. Angus King (I), who previously opposed National Park Service ownership in northern Maine: “Rather than reignite controversy in a region that is beginning to heal and move on, I hope we can allow the monument to continue to serve as one important part of a multifaceted economic revitalization strategy which is already underway.”

• U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (D): “The monument has brought new visitors to the area, boosted sales at local businesses, and is helping the real estate market. In a part of the state that’s eager for good economic news, I don’t think anyone wants to see those benefits undone.”

• Maine Rep. Stephen Stanley (D), who represents the Katahdin region and who previously sponsored legislation for Gov. Paul LePage (R) to stop KWWNM: “We had a little bit of hope. And now all of a sudden, here we go again, the spike is in the coffin again [with the Trump review of the monument].”

• Dozens of Maine legislators support KWWNM

Fact: KWWNM has already had a beneficial economic impact
• Millions of dollars have been invested or pledged for this economically depressed area since monument creation
• Realtors in the Katahdin region report a rebound in real estate prices
• Many businesses have been investing in anticipation of increased activity, which is already evident
• One business owner attributed to KWWNM an unprecedented 33% year-to-year increase in revenue
• Even former opponents, such as Rep. Stanley, now see the monument as sparking economic hope

To submit comments, go to www.regulations.gov, and search for DOI-2017-0002. Deadline for comment is July 10, 2017.

Posted on Friday, May 12, 2017 (Archive on Friday, June 2, 2017)
Posted by Jym St. Pierre   Contributed by Jym St. Pierre
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