|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
|Date:||March 25, 2009|
|Contact:||Andrea Keller Helsel, NPCA, 202.454.3332|
National Parks Conservation Association Praises Congressional Passage of Public Lands Bill
Legislation contains protections for national parks nationwide
Washington, D.C. - The nation’s leading voice for the national parks, the nonprofit National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) today praised the U.S. Congress for passing the Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009 (H.R.146), which included a number of bills important for the protection and interpretation of America’s National Park System.
“Bipartisan support in the Congress has ensured that many of our national parks will be enhanced and preserved for our children and grandchildren,” said NPCA President Tom Kiernan.
The Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 contains important bills that:
• Expand Minute Man National Historical Park in Massachusetts to protect the historically-significant farm of Colonel James Barrett, commander of the Middlesex Militia.
• Study the possible addition of the Green McAdoo School in Clinton, Tenn., to the park system. In 1956, 12 students from Green McAdoo became the first African-Americans to integrate a state-operated school.
• Establish a commemorative trail in upstate New York that connects local and state sites to the Women’s Rights National Historical Park.
• Protect the cultural, ecological and scenic integrity of the Little River Canyon National Preserve in Alabama and Fort Davis National Historic Site in Texas from adjacent development by adjusting the boundary.
• Offer wilderness protection to remarkable landscapes within Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park in California, and Zion National Park in Utah.
• Authorize the creation of the Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail in the Pacific Northwest—the first national geologic trail in the National Park System.
• Designate the Amargosa River as Wild and Scenic, providing much-needed protection for water resources at Death Valley National Park in California.
• Protect our nation’s irreplaceable fossil record and ensure that fossils from public lands are available for educational and scientific research by codifying the existing practice of requiring that vertebrate fossils and other rare and scientifically-significant fossils be collected only by qualified researchers who obtain a permit. The bill toughens penalties on the illegal collection of fossils on federal lands, including national parks such as Badlands in South Dakota and Petrified Forest in Arizona.
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