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Lawsuit challenges latest USNPS acting director appointment

The latest maneuver to evade Senate confirmation for the National Park Service’s (NPS) top official violates the law according to a newly-amended federal suit filed yesterday by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) and Western Watersheds Project (WWP). The new complaint was approved by U.S. District Court Judge Tanya S. Chutkan on August 24th ; she ordered the Defendants to file their answer or a responsive motion by September 14th. The Trump administration is already facing similar legal challenges in other agencies, including, most notably, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), the Office of Surface Mining, and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

This August, following the abrupt retirement of Deputy Director David Vela who had been the de facto acting NPS Director, Interior Secretary David Bernhardt announced the designation of Margaret Everson “to exercise the delegable authority” of the NPS Director in place of Vela for an indeterminate period.

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