Just two days ago I wrote about a possible vote during the lame-duck session to hike up funding levels under the “oil spill bill” for the federal land-grab program, the Land and Water Conservation Trust.
Even more threatening are the efforts underway now among Congressional Democrats and Interior Secretary Salazar to sneak through a huge federal lands omnibus package. The effort is being led by Sen. Bingaman, outgoing chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, and would include more than 60 bills to turn many of America’s beautiful natural treasures over to federal control.
Among those federal land acquisitions likely included in the omnibus bill:
- Turn the Valles Caldera National Preserve in New Mexico into part of the National Park System.
- Turn the Devil’s Staircase in Oregon over to federally owned wilderness land.
- Expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness in Washington.
- Expand the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River and Pratt River over to federal control.
Numerous reports have chronicled the federal government’s inability to manage land it already has taken. Washington should not be taking over even more of our national lands. See GAO Report. Even more egregious are efforts to sneak this through during the lame-duck session when Members voted out of office are not held accountable to the American people.
For more on this, see Chris Horner’s excellent blog post here.