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FOR ALL PEOPLE FOR ALL TIME

This was the name of Mark and Dan Jury's film that portrayed the arrogance and insensitivity of the National Park Service during the first twenty years here. During that period, about 400 families in the area lost their homes and Boston Twp lost around 70% of the land which constituted their tax base.

The title above was the Jurysí tongue-in-cheek reference to the term that was initially used by park personnel and supporters to sell the park to the public.

My family and neighbors live across the street from the Environmental Education Center, (EEC), which is on Oak Hill Road, and we all know that at least that portion of the park is not "For All People For All Time".

A sign at the entrance states that this area is not open to the public. Interested people are told the area is closed and they should contact the National Park Service should they have questions. Interestingly enough, there is no telephone number listed. Get the message?

To make matters worse, Boston Township provides most of the park, and, more specifically, the EEC with free police, fire and rescue services as well as the road to get there. Our Federal tax dollars were used to purchase this property for recreational purposes.

This is in a Twp. where about 8% of the property owners pay all of the real estate taxes. The rest of the township is government owned, and the governments pay no taxes.

Those of us who attended the initial public information hearing prior to construction of the EEC were told by then- superintendent John Debo that neighbors would be welcome. That welcome has not survived Mr. Debo's retirement. We had not been informed of that. However, in recent weeks when my neighbors and I have walked over there as we have done since before it was NPS, one or more rangers and their cars have quickly appeared and accosted us aggressively. They fail to understand we are an asset, not a liability. We support the free services that the park enjoys and we provide additional security for the EEC when we walk park trails and watch park areas.

Our heavy tax burden continues to increase. I urge you to stay out of the EEC unless invited.

Marty Griffith