WASHINGTONDC – Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06) sent a letter to National Park Service (NPS) Director Jon Jarvis yesterday urging that the agency provide adequate resources to Sandy Hook as it recovers and rebuilds from the devastating impact of Superstorm Sandy. Sandy Hook’s infrastructure suffered critical damage from the storm, and Pallone requested that the park receive the Park Service’s full support to rebuild in time for the summer season.
Sandy Hook draws more than two million visitors each year to its public beaches and also is a driver of the local economy. Nearby stores, restaurants and hotels depend on constant tourism to Sandy Hook to stay profitable. In addition, the research centers located on Sandy Hook are large local employers and provide important insights to the regional marine environment.
“Sandy Hook is one of our area’s true natural treasures. Not only is important for its pristine environment, it also drives our local economy by attracting tourists,” stated Pallone. “When I visited Sandy Hook this past month I witnessed infrastructure in bad shape, including significant damage to Park Service facilities, major sand loss, and roads and bike paths undermined. Despite the damage, I am confident that with the full support of the National Park Service we can rebuild Sandy Hook so it is open by shore season.”
Sandy Hook, which is located in the Sixth Congressional District, is a unit of Gateway National Recreation Area and falls under the National Park Service’s jurisdiction. In the letter, Pallone specifically requested that NPS provide a detailed plan explaining how the Park Service plans to restore operations. He also asked for a report on whether Sandy Hook would be able to grant access on a rolling basis to parts of the park as they are restored.
“Now, more than ever, New Jersey needs the economic benefit that Sandy Hook provides. I call on the National Park Service to do everything within its power to ensure that Sandy Hook is operational as soon as possible and certainly by summer for visitors to enjoy,” added Pallone.