Park Service Disbands E-Bike Advisory Group Over Secret Lobbying Concerns

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“WASHINGTON (BRAIN) — The National Park Service, facing a lawsuit from conservation groups for allowing e-bikes on non-motorized trails, disbanded a bike-industry group that has been accused of secret lobbying for that access.

The Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility and a coalition of conservation groups are suing to restore a ban on e-bikes on NPS non-motorized trails. According to the suit, the E-bike Partner & Agency Group’s meetings with the staff of Interior Secretary David Bernhardt and Deputy NPS Director P. Daniel Smith violated the Federal Advisory Committee Act, which requires transparency to prevent secret lobbying.

“This e-bike call will conclude our ‘Partner and Agency’ calls. … This is to ensure that we avoid any conflict with the Federal Advisory Committee Act,” said an email from an NPS official to colleagues dated Oct. 9 and obtained by PEER through the Freedom of Information Act.”

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