House subcommittee to hold hearing on Occupy D.C.

WASHINGTON (AP) - A House subcommittee will hold a hearing next week on the Occupy D.C. encampment in McPherson Square and the decision to allow protesters to remain there.

Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., who chairs the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has asked the National Park Service to explain why protesters have been allowed to flout a ban on camping on park service property.

Park service officials have said a "24-hour vigil" is permitted in the park and that the protesters' First Amendment rights are paramount.

The committee says National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis will testify at next Tuesday's hearing of the subcommittee that oversees District of Columbia government.

Also scheduled to testify is the director of the district's health department, who has said McPherson Square is infested with rats.