- Not enactedThe President has not signed this bill
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National Parks, Forests, and Public LandsCommittee on Natural ResourcesIntroducedDecember 6th, 2017
- house Committees
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Grand Staircase Escalante Enhancement Act
To provide greater conservation, recreation, economic development and local management of Federal lands in Garfield and Kane Counties, Utah.
Grand Staircase Escalante Enhancement Act This bill establishes the Escalante Canyons National Park and Preserve within the Escalante Canyons National Monument (established by this bill and consisting of approximately 243,241 acres) in Utah. Federal lands within the park and preserve, including lands or interests acquired by the United States afterwards, are withdrawn from: entry, appropriation, or disposal under the public land laws; location, entry, and patent under the mining laws; and operation of the mineral leasing, mineral materials, and geothermal leasing laws. The bill also establishes the Grand Staircase National Monument (consisting of approximately 211,983 acres) and the Kaiparowits National Monument (consisting of approximately 551,117 acres). A management council shall implement comprehensive management plans for the park and preserve and the monuments. Federal land managers must adhere to the management plans created by the council. The public lands excluded from the lands and interests in lands reserved within the modified boundaries of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument under the Presidential Proclamation dated December 4, 2017, shall be open to: entry, location, selection, sale, or other disposition under the public land laws; disposition under all laws related to mineral and geothermal leasing; and location, entry, and patent under the mining laws. Interior shall convey to the state of Utah the Hole in the Rock Road (BLM [Bureau of Land Management] Road 200).
This bill basically kills the park service as we know it. The bill would open this new national park to drilling and mining, as well as making the park service only accountable to county officials and not the American public. Terrible precedent and basically a cop - out bill to get around the administration gutting Grand Staircase - Escalante National Monument.
Please kill this one before it gets started. This is another republican UTahn bill that uses pretty words to disguise a political land grab by the state. This land that belongs to ALL of us; there was a plan to manage it already in place -- and to top it off: every bit of this transfer of power seems to be at federal expense. What??! The Grand Staircase Escalante Monument is best left as originally intended. Can I add a quote? From AmericanRivers.org: "The proposed legislation (H.R. 4558) creates a “Management Council” that would determine the management plan for all lands, including the new Park. The bill states: “Federal land managers shall adhere to the management plans created by the Management Council.” The Management Council shall consist of 7 members: 2 members from Kane County, 2 members from Garfield County, 1 Utah state representative, 1 Dept. of Interior representative, and 1 at large representative. In effect, this bill hands complete control of these lands to the State of Utah while all Americans fund the operating costs. That’s right, roughly 12,000 people in Garfield and Kane Counties will decide how these lands are managed, what is allowed and not allowed, while 330 million Americans pay for their decisions. To add insult to injury, the bill requires the Federal Government to transfer ownership of Hole in the Rock road to the State of Utah for FREE." They said it better than I did.
Any “National Park” that’s not to be managed by the NPS in accordance with the Organic Act is a sham. A National Park in name only. If you’re going to shrink GSENM then just do it. Don’t dilute our National Parks with this farce of a maneuver just to gain political cover for allowing unchecked development of our country’s most precious places.