March 16, 2013
UPDATE: Seashore will hire seasonal workers after all
By IRENE NOLAN
Cape Hatteras National Seashore officials got good news last week.
Echols, the seashore’s deputy superintendent, said Friday that the
Outer Banks Group learned that the freeze on hiring seasonal workers
was being lifted for parks that managed to meet their forced cuts under
sequestration by other means.
Park officials, he said, are pushing ahead with hiring seasonals who will keep the park running during the busy tourist season.
units were encouraged to keep interviewing and vetting seasonals, even
during the hiring freeze, so the seashore was ready to start making job
The seashore will have about the same number of seasonal
workers as it did last year, and, therefore, Echols said visitors
should not notice any difference in services.
Campgrounds will open, though Oregon Inlet, Frisco, and Ocracoke campgrounds will open on April 19, rather than April 5.
Cape Hatteras Lighthouse will open on schedule on Friday, April 19, for
climbing and will remain open, as usual, to Columbus Day. There
will be no cutback in climbing hours.
The Bodie Island
Lighthouse will also open on schedule on April 19 for its first season
of climbing after a renovation of the tower and the first-order Fresnel
There will be no change in Visitor Center hours.
will lead a full program of interpretive programs on such things has
history and ecology and conduct a full schedule of activity programs,
such as snorkeling and exploring the sound and marshes.
said it is hoped that by Memorial Day weekend, the seashore will have
hired and trained its full complement of lifeguards for Coquina Beach,
Buxton Beach, and Ocracoke Day Use Center. However, he added,
that the process for hiring lifeguards is slower, so there is still a
chance that all won’t be hired by the end of May and some adjustments
in lifeguarded-beach schedules could be needed.
Echols said that
the National Park Service units were asked to plan for a 5 percent
across the board cut. At the seashore that amounts to $477,000
out of a $9.5 million budget.
The seashore will meets its budget
cuts by a hiring freeze on open positions and saving on such expenses
as travel, training, and supplies and equipment.
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