OLF Hearings Begin

Wilmington, NC – Public hearings start this week on the proposed Outlying Land Field in Washington and Beaufort counties.

The Navy has trimmed the number of acres it wants to buy from 30,000 to 13,000.

Executive Director for Audubon North Carolina Chris Canfield says opponents should come out during this week's round of public hearings and let the Navy know about the value of eastern North Carolina.

Now the problem is, frankly the Navy up to date has not been listening. So any comments made to the Navy also need to be also made to our senators particularly and our congressional representative.

The refuge is a haven for a large number of waterfowl and a growing red wolf population. Francine Blend is an environmental impact manager for naval facilities. She says the Navy and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services are in discussions about the wolves expanding territory.

To determine some conservation matters and restore some habitat and work with U.S. Fish and Wildlife to keep the red wolf a viable species in the OLF site.

Navy officials say they will consider all comments delivered during the round of public hearings. The Navy is excepting written comments until April 24th.