National Conservation Groups Urge Congress to Reject Legislation that would Harm America’s Wild and Scenic Riverways

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   July 27, 2011
Contact:   Alison Zemanski, NPCA Media Relations Manager, P: 202.454.3332, C: 202.384.8762
Lynn McClure, NPCA Midwest Regional Director, P: 312.263.0111, C: 312.343.7216


National Conservation Groups Urge Congress to Reject Legislation that would Harm America’s Wild and Scenic Riverways

Proposed legislation would set dangerous precedent and will waste millions of taxpayer dollars

Statement by NPCA Midwest Regional Director Lynn McClure

Background: The National Parks Conservation Association, America's leading voice for protecting our national parks, has joined with four national conservation organizations, representing more than two million members and supporters, to oppose two congressional bills, if enacted as proposed, would result in construction of a $700 million mammoth, freeway-style bridge that harms a unit of the National Park System, sets a dangerous precedent for all Wild and Scenic Rivers that are under pressure from development, and wastes millions of taxpayer dollars. To view the letters, please click here.

“The current legislation being considered by Congress (H.R. 850/S. 1134) proposes to construct costly freeway-style bridge over the St. Croix Scenic Riverway – one of the eight original rivers designated as Wild and Scenic more than 40 years ago.  If enacted, this legislation will result in a bridge that harms a unit of the National Park System and sets a dangerous precedent for all Wild and Scenic Rivers that are under pressure from development.”

“In late 2010, the National Park Service determined that the bridge design proposed in H.R. 850 and S. 1134 would create a direct and adverse effect on the values for which the riverway was established.  The proposed costly, freeway-style bridge would monopolize state and federal funding for bridge repair in Minnesota.
 
“In addition, we’ve joined the Sensible Stillwater Bridge Partnership, a coalition of Stillwater residents and business owners, and transportation & environmental advocates that champion a lower alternative bridge design that will accommodate traffic concerns, save taxpayers more than $220 million, and will better protect St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. This design, a version of which was first presented more than 10 years ago, has never been fully studied and is well worth consideration by the Minnesota Department of Transportation.”

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