Tsongas Pushes Priorities for Lawrence in Hearing with National Parks Director Jarvis

Press Release from Congresswoman Niki Tsongas

Massachusetts Fifth Congressional District, Contact John Noble: phone: 202.225.3411; email: john.noble @ mail.house.gov

Tsongas Pushes Priorities for Concord and Lawrence in Hearing with National Parks Director Jarvis

WASHINGTON, DC – March 10, 2011 – The House Natural Resources Committee today held a hearing to examine the National Park Service budget for the coming fiscal year. The hearing featured testimony from National Parks Director Jon Jarvis. During the hearing, Fifth District Congresswoman Niki Tsongas asked Director Jarvis about efforts that the National Parks Service (NPS) is engaging in to expand green spaces and parks in urban areas. Congresswoman Tsongas cited Groundwork Lawrence, a nonprofit group that works to create green space in Lawrence, as an example that should be supported by the NPS.

Last year, Tsongas introduced the Groundwork USA Trust Act of 2010 which would strengthen the existing Groundwork USA (GWUSA) program and provides federal funding to local communities and nonprofit organizations for green-space projects. The idea for the legislation was developed with Groundwork Lawrence. The Groundwork USA initiative was launched by the National Park Service in 1996 to transform blighted urban neighborhoods into parks and livable open spaces, while creating jobs in communities with high unemployment. Click here to a view a YouTube clip of Tsongas and Jarvis talking about Groundwork Lawrence.

Tsongas also emphasized to Director Jarvis the importance of preserving the soundscapes of Minute Man National Historical Park in Concord. Nearby, Hanscom Field Airport recently announced plans to double the private jet infrastructure at the airport. These plans represent a threat to the historically and environmentally significant areas adjacent to the airport from increased jet aviation and the resulting noise and air pollution. Click here to a view a YouTube clip of Tsongas and Jarvis talking about efforts to protect Minute Man National Historic Park.

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John W. Noble, Communications Director, Rep. Niki Tsongas, 202-225-3411