Government Shutdown Effects

Closed Sign

12 p.m. Update: We just got off the phone with Mike Anderson, NPS Deputy Superintendent. He said that NPS has gone ahead and closed the park per direction from the federal government. He said signs were put up and barricades installed. Because the National Park extends out into the water, all beaches from Lindt Point to Haulover Bay are closed. Additionally on the South Shore, Salt Pond, the Lameshures and Reef Bay are closed. All park trails are also closed.

“No one is happy about this, including our staff,” he said.

Anderson said 46 park employees have been furloughed including Park Superintendent Brion FitzGerald. Anderson will remain working as the park coordinator during the shutdown.

Regarding the water, vessels are allowed to pass through the park waters, but they cannot anchor or tie up to any of the moorings. In addition, all commercial activity is suspended including guided tours, and snorkeling or scuba tours. Boat operators can, however, pick up guests in St. John but they must travel to the BVIs.

If anyone is found to be on NSP land or in NPS waters, they will be asked to leave by park enforcement rangers who will remain working. If they do not leave at that time, they will receive a citation.

Check out the map below to see which beaches are not included in the park:

Map of St John

Click the map to see a larger image

Original Story Below: 

Well the government shutdown went through. We’re not going to get into how ridiculous this whole thing is, but we will pass along some information about how this shutdown will impact the island. This information is courtesy of St. John Source:

1. The National Park is closed. All parking lots will be closed. People are not allowed to swim at the National Park beaches. If they are caught doing so, they will be asked to leave.

2. The National Park Service visitor center is closed.

3. Annaberg is closed.

4. Concession operations such as weddings and boat charters cannot occur.

5. The playground next to the visitor’s center is closed.

Please click here to read the full story from St. John Source.


27 comments for “Government Shutdown Effects

  1. MZ
    October 1, 2013 at 2:21 pm

    I am sorry that the Obama administration has decided to strike at the NPS. This is strictly an act to effect the most people and get those people to complain. There is PLENTY of waste in the federal government which funding is unnecessary. Obamacare will kill the US and our lawmakers at least need to make these jackasses subject to the same rules and regulations they are imposing (shoving down our throats) on the American people. I was in SJ recently and I never saw park personnel outside if the visitor center. There is NO reason for most of the beaches etc? to be closed it’s a strong arm tactic of the OBAMA administration!!

    • RichB
      October 1, 2013 at 3:15 pm

      Yuuuuup!

    • DdV
      October 1, 2013 at 3:21 pm

      MZ is apparently unaware of the cause of the shutdown.
      Congress failed to pass a continuing resolution to fund the government.

      The Shutdown is due to the wing-nuts in the house which attempted to cancel a law they did not care for regardless that it passed both house of Congress, signed by the President, who then won reelection, and then was ruled constitutional by the Supreme Court.
      The House closed down the Government in attempt to force their minority opinion on the majority using extortion.

      Obama, could have avoided the shutdown by agreeing to cancel affordable care act but that only solves the problem for 6 weeks.
      What would the next demand from the radical right, be?

      Dismantle the EPA?
      Make it Mandatory to carry handguns?
      Repeal women’s right to choose and to vote?
      Declare Christianity the state region?
      All of these are Tea Party issues!

      • October 1, 2013 at 3:58 pm

        MZ is woefully misinformed. If the government is shut down then national parks are automatically closed no matter who is president. It is no strong arm tactic, that is what the republicans in the house have done by trying to stop the ACA by blackmail tactics. If Boehner had called for a clean resolution which would have kept the government open and left out any riders then a majority of republicans would have joined democrats to keep the government open. But Boehner caved to pressure from a tea party minority and refused to call a CR vote. If the senate & president had caved on this issue then it would have set a dangerous precedent for all future presidents and the passage of law. If they want to change the law then go through the legal process. MV has been brainwashed, probably by Fox news. The republicans are responsible for this government shutdown but even a majority of them wished to avoid it.

    • Joe
      October 2, 2013 at 9:18 am

      MZ…..you are entitled to your political views, of course,but I think the issue here is that the daily operations of life, including jobs, are being disrupted by a dysfunctional Congress.

      Let’s say you were an NFL coach and you didn’t like the ref’s call, even though it was ruled legal. And your decision was to pull the team off the field and refuse to play until the ref’s call was reversed. How would everybody in the stands and watching on TV around the world view your team?

      This is beyond politics now…this is all about playing by agreed-upon rules.

      The National Park is closed, employees are furloughed, and, all the while, John Boehner still gets a paycheck….so he can be spared the personal pain that the average American might be exposed to.

      This is absolutely ridiculous. Let’s agree on that point.

    • Sheri
      October 2, 2013 at 10:59 am

      MZ I agree with most of your comments. People should be reminded that the OB admin has NEVER
      Passed a budget. If there is no budget, how can you determine what departments get funded? Or cut?
      OB wants the debt ceiling increased so that he can spend more and give more away, thus making more & more people dependent on the government . If you work for the government or are dependent on the government for your survival you will support/ vote for the person or party that gives things to you. It is a vicious circle & difficult to break.
      The last time we got to this point ….. OB set the guidelines for the sequester …. He decided what to cut. For political reasons he chose things that would “hurt” the most & hoped to cause great backlash against his opponents . He is playing the same game again.
      Power corrupts & absolute power corrupts absolutely.
      We should have impeached CONGRESS ! Years ago for failure to uphold the constitution & do their sworn duty .

    • Greg
      October 4, 2013 at 11:17 am

      This shows Obama is not a leader but a cry baby and loser because he didn’t get his way.
      But legally the NPS BELONGS TO THE CITIZENS AND NOT THE LOW LIFE POLITICIANS.

  2. Jody
    October 1, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    No matter what your political views are, it’s a shame it’s come to this. My wife and I had considered returning to St. John for our first wedding anniversary next month (our first trip was our honeymoon). Then we decided to do a “smaller” trip and visit D.C. museums/attractions for a long weekend. We put both trips off due to some family issues and it seems that has worked out. I can’t imagine the frustration of someone on vacation that is now being told to keep off the most beautiful beaches in the world.

    • danz
      October 6, 2013 at 4:08 am

      I know. My husband and I are planning our 10yr wedding anniversary in st.john next week. What a way to spend a vacation. Not able to go to the beaches or snorkel. So disapointed! !!!

  3. David
    October 1, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    Here is how our Gov’t works according to the Constitution of the US.

    A bill is passed by Congress (Senate and House of Representatives) – which was done for the ACA (aka ObamaCare) in 2009.
    The Presisdent then signs the bill into Law (also done in 2009)
    The Supreme Court can rule whether or not a Law passed in this manner is unconstitutional or not (The Supreme Court ruled that the ACA is indeed constitutional)
    In addition – the Presidential vote in 2012 further supported the people’s preference to have this law enacted as this was a large part of Obama’s platform.

    The right-wing of the GOP – who claim to be ‘Patriots’ and are bound to uphold the Consitution of the United States – are doing just the opposite by trying to steamroll their misguided ideology in complete contrast to the Constitution and the Will of the People by obstructionism.

    those are the facts… it is the GOP’s fault that this shut-down occurred.

    btw, it is the money that Congress has spent that the Gov’t is about to default on without an increase in the debt-ceiling – not President Obama’s spending

  4. Stefanie
    October 1, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    Just a thought: if there are no employees around, who is to stop people from enjoying the park?

    • Terri
      October 9, 2013 at 12:27 am

      I’m with you on that thought! My son will be honeymooning in St. John next week and we his parents paid for the trip. They have my permission to receive as many citations needed for them to view and experience the absolute God created beauty of those beaches waters and all the history they want to explore! Have a great honeymoon son! Enjoy trunk bay cinnamon bay Leinster bay watermelon cay cannel bay and make love under the beautiful stars that our great God Jesus Christ has created for our pleasure!

  5. Hud
    October 1, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    A government that offers you free things ( which they never deliver on) and keeps people off the beaches that they claim to own. And enslaves people in government owned housing . Was the Begining…… Now they want to control Our healthcare? Look at what is happening to Dr Ben Carson http://dailycaller.com/2013/10/01/ben-carson-i-had-my-first-encounter-with-the-irs-following-the-national-prayer-breakfast/

    • Sheri
      October 2, 2013 at 11:06 am

      Incredible! Thks for sharing this…
      I must admit that I gave some thought to whether it was wise to join these discussions…..knowing that by sharing my email address( even tho not shown)
      I am exposing myself & family members to potential targeting in the future.

  6. woody
    October 1, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    Here’s the way I see it….

    The rangers are furloughed and are not officially “rangers” and are working on their own. If they issue a citation, it will most likely be trespass and can not hold up in court since these are public lands. In other words, “we the people” own them. Legally, the NPS would have no liability if so posted though.

    The NPS maintains numerous houses and housing for park personnel, including property within the park. Superintendent Fitzgerald and all of the other park employees need to immediately vacate the premises or are subject to citation just like anyone who walks onto park land. Hypocritical actions by park personnel doesn’t cut it. Brion, please comment.

  7. Ken
    October 1, 2013 at 10:08 pm

    http://www.dpnr.gov.vi/userfiles/Beach_Access_Brochure.pdf

    Your Right to Enjoy Virgin Islands Beaches

    In 1978 Virgin Islands passed an important new law, the Coastal Zone Management Act, to protect and preserve the coastal areas of the Territory and to preserve the tradition of the public access to the Territory’s shorelines.

    Today, the goals that were set still stand as one of the best ways we have of passing that Virgin Islands heritage-beach access on to future generations.

    Access to cultural, historical and natural areas along the coast is essential to public understanding and enjoyment of coastal and marine resources. Of course, the public should use the territory’s beaches in ways that would not degrade or damage these valuable resources.

    The CZM Program, through its permitting process, does not allow commercial building on the Territory’s shorelines without first securing an easement for public access to the shorelines. Beaches cannot be fenced off. The public has the right to be on the beach, enjoy them and use them for recreational purposes.

    If you have been denied your right to be on a beach in the US Virgin Islands, please contact the Division of Coastal Zone Management and report the incident.

    • Sheri
      October 2, 2013 at 11:12 am

      Thank You! WE own the parks & beaches. If brave men & women are willing to fight & die every day to protect our freedom….. Do you suppose a few St Johnians could suffer through a day on the beach to prove a point?

    • David
      October 2, 2013 at 3:06 pm

      Ken – Very interesting. I was wondering the same thing about what was being stated in the article about NPS beach/water access, and potential citations. NPS may control the parking lots and moorings dedicated to the specific beach area, and therefore can cordon off those areas. But, in line with the CMZ act, I also thought that the StJ beaches were all deemed public use beaches. Meaning that the NPS can prevent you from parking or mooring at NPS beaches, but access should still be available. I would love to hear Mike Anderson, NPS Deputy Superintendent, comment about this question directly. Does anyone have an email address for him?

      btw – some people appear to get their lessons in Civics from Fox ‘News’ – not a good idea.

  8. October 2, 2013 at 7:14 am

    Only one person so far has made any sort of sense and put this in perspective in a clear and concise manner…..That would be David. Bravo and touché.

  9. Helen
    October 2, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Thanks David. MZ, not sure where you got your information. A civics class may help.

  10. RichB
    October 2, 2013 at 6:06 pm

    All of you, please do shut up,

  11. Arthur
    October 2, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    Clearly, territorial law would not override federal law.

  12. Dan
    October 2, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    Never have seen so many Obama-ites in 1 place like this before. Why don’t we just blame everything on Bush still like was done the first 4 years. Face it, Obama is pushing us towards a socialist gov’t where all wealth is shared and that you can make more by staying home on your lazy @ss then actually going out and getting a job!! Remember the fast food workers that want over $16.00/hr and they are dumber and dirt. The American way was to work hard get an education and EARN what you have. NOT to rely on the government for existence with free housing, welfare, food stamps, unlimited unemployment, free cell phones, and now free medical care. I have had to work hard and diligently for everything that I own. And yes, I am a federal worker that is deemed essential and MUST come to work, even though I am NOT getting paid. I want a true gov’t shutdown of every agency, including: FAA, TSA, USDA, and especially the entitlement agencies that would stop all the free money handed out on the 1st & 15th of each month! No air travel, no food inspections, no military to protect you, no border patrol, no federal marshals, etc… Only then might BOTh sides begin to talk and solve these problems!!

    • VJ
      October 5, 2013 at 3:01 pm

      A civic class indeed is what some people need. The House of Representatives and the House ALONE is responsible for the purse strings of our Government. DO YOU GET THAT??? THE HOUSE AND THE HOUSE ALONE. Now for the life of me, I can’t figured out why they haven’t enforced that over the years, but that doesn’t mean that they are not within their right to do exactly what they are doing. Also, our government has 3 branches to a reason. Our government is very irresponsible with the money that they spend. So they want to raise the debt limit, but don’t want to cut spending. That is IRRESPONSIBLE and the House has every right to say if you want to increase the debt limit, CUT SPENDING!! The president ILLEGALLY I might add, changed the ObamaCare law that he signed into effect. Once something is a LAW, you CAN NOT, CAN NOT change it on your own. Changes can be made and then voted on, but not changed like Obeyme has changed his signature Obamacare. He demanded that EVERYONE have it, then he exempted himself, Congress, Senate, Supreme Court and all their employees. He told Big Business that they can delay their start of ObamaCare for one year, he exempted numerous unions. This basically told small business and individuals – you don’t count. So Congress dare say to the Great One that if you are delaying the start for your Business Buddies, everyone get a year delay. Ok, so you say ObamaCare is the law, deal with it. OK, at one time Slavery was the law of the land – didn’t make it right. Segregation was the law of the land – didn’t make it right. Women not being allowed to vote was the law of the land – didn’t make it right. Prohibition was the law of the land – didn’t make it right. ObamaCare is not the fix all for our healthcare. So that dear sheeple is what is going on. Obeyme got ticked that someone would DARE challenge him and although there have been numerous Government shut downs in the past, they have not closed the National Parks. Obeyme is acting like a toddler, kicking and screaming because he isn’t getting his own way. Like I said, we have THREE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT, not a Dictatorship or a Monarchy.

      • Terri
        October 9, 2013 at 12:50 am

        I’m with you on that thought! My son will be honeymooning in St. John next week and we his parents paid for the trip. They have my permission to receive as many citations needed for them to view and experience the absolute God created beauty of those beaches waters and all the history they want to explore! Have a great honeymoon son! Enjoy trunk bay cinnamon bay Leinster bay watermelon cay cannel bay and make love under the beautiful stars that our great God Jesus Christ has created for our pleasure!

    • RETIRED
      October 7, 2013 at 7:42 pm

      As a federal retiree of 35 years, Congress (House and Senate) just needs to pass the bill to fund the government by midnight Sep 30 each year. This funding deadline never changes. Congress needs to do their jobs and meet their deadlines. Continuing resolutions, and government shutdowns cause workers to spend an inordinate amount of time preparing for these activities, which distract from the work that federal tax payers are expecting the government to conduct. These distractions are very costly and introduce rework, a BIG inefficiency! Just contact your congressional representative and demand that they pass the funding by Sep 30!

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