Joyce Joins Interior Secretary Bernhardt to Conduct Inspection at Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Restore Public Access to Trail

May 15, 2020
Great Lakes


BRECKSVILLE – Today, Congressman Dave Joyce (OH-14) joined U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary, David Bernhardt, in visiting the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Together, they conducteda site inspection, discussedsafely expanding access to our National Parks during the coronavirus pandemic, and reopened a trail where Ohioans can enjoy the outdoors while also preserving their health and safety. During their visit, Joyce and the Secretary also met with rangers and other park staff to discuss their experiences during the pandemic, hear their thoughts on restoring public access, and exchange ideas for how best to do so while keeping park visitors safe.Other officials in attendance included Cuyahoga Valley National Park Superintendent Craig Kenkel and Deb Yalanda, CEO of the Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

“I was honored to join Secretary Bernhardt at the Cuyahoga Valley National Park,” said Joyce. “We’re very proud to have a portion of the Buckeye State’s only national park here in Ohio’s 14th Congressional Districtand I remain committed to ensuring my constituents can safely enjoy what the park has to offer during this pandemic. As the Cuyahoga Valley National Park begins to responsibly restore access to the public, I will continue to work side-by-side with Secretary Bernhardt and the Interior Department to ensure we are not only protecting the health and safety of the park’s visitors, but also that of the park rangers and hardworking staff.”

“I appreciate Congressman Joyce joining me at Cuyahoga Valley National Park today for a site inspection and to discuss how we are working to keep our public lands and parks accessible for the American people to enjoy during this pandemic,” said Secretary of the Interior David L. Bernhardt.

“We appreciate Congressman Joyce’s long history of support for Cuyahoga Valley National Park and were honored to have both him and the Secretary of the Interior visit today,” said Deb Yalanda, CEO of the Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park. “Their visit highlighted how beloved our park is by the Northeast Ohio community and how it can be safely enjoyed by area residents as they seek a beautiful place for health and recreation during these trying times.”

“Secretary Bernhardt’s first visit to the park was enriched by Congressman Joyce sharing his perspective on the importance of Cuyahoga Valley to Northeast Ohioans,” said Cuyahoga Valley National Park Superintendent Craig Kenkel. “I’m very grateful to both the Congressman and Secretary for all they do in support of Cuyahoga Valley National Park and our mission to conserve it for the benefit and use of all.”

While an overwhelming majority of the 500 million acres of public lands managed by the Interior Department has remained accessible to the public throughout the pandemic, some sites were closed as a result of following state and local public health directives. The National Park Servicecontinues to work alongside governors and state and local public health officialsto enact a phased, park-by-park resumption of operations. Joyce currently serves as the Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, which is in charge of providing discretionary funding for the Interior Department, which includes the National Park Service.


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