Daines Leads Senate Hearing on Crowding, Record Season at Montana’s National Parks

U.S. SENATE — As the top Republican on the U.S. Senate National Parks Subcommittee, U.S. Senator Steve Daines today led a hearing to examine the effects of increased visitation at Montana’s national parks. Daines invited Whitefish Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kevin Gartland as a witness to talk about the impact gateway communities like Whitefish are seeing from the boost in tourism.


Click HERE to watch and download the Senator’s opening remarks. Download TV elements HERE.

“Glacier National Park is one of the Crown Jewels of the park system and a major attraction for tourists around the world who support thousands of jobs and boost the economy for our local communities. Whitefish and other gateway communities see firsthand the benefits of our national parks and I am excited to hear from Mr. Gartland on how the Park Service and our local communities are working together to address the challenges and benefits of increased visitation to our parks,” Daines said. “While there are challenges we need to look at because of increased visitation, we also need to ensure that we aren’t closing off our parks to the world and that we can continue to grow visitation, jobs and economic benefits.”

Daines asked Mr. Gartland about the new ticketing system for visitors to Glacier National Park and how this system has impacted the community and visitors to the park. Watch and download the exchange HERE

Daines also pressed the witnesses to share ideas on how the National Park Service (NPS) can better utilize new technology to drive visitors to lesser-known parks and relieve congestion at Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park. Watch and download the exchange HERE.


Contact: Katherine McKeogh, Katie Schoettler