The Associated Press
JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) — The Town Council unanimously approved a resolution urging a ban on scenic helicopter tours of Jackson Hole until the Federal Aviation Administration can extensively study the issue.
The vote represents the latest effort to stop commercial flights over Grand Teton National Park. Detractors say the tours are noisy, dangerous, disrupt wildlife and obstruct views of the Tetons.
The resolution, requested by the Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance, passed 4-0 Monday.
The alliance and other conservation groups petitioned the FAA to put scenic flights on hold until the agency studies hazards to public safety, the environment and economy of Jackson Hole.
This resolution adds yet another voice of support to the petition we filed with the FAA and is another example of the communitys unified interest in having these greater issues examined by the FAA, said Carl Schneebeck, program associate with the alliance.
Gov. Jim Geringer and Sens. Craig Thomas and Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., also support the petition. Thomas has introduced legislation banning the flights.
Opposition to helicopter tours has been growing since San Diego, Calif.-based Vortex Aviation Services proposed the flights a year ago. Last month, the company began tours that depart from and land at Jackson Hole Airport, which is located entirely within Grand Teton National Park.
The conservation alliance has also proposed an amendment to Teton Countys regulations that would ban commercial air tours from operating at private heliports in the county. County commissioners are scheduled to take up the issue around July 17.
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