Public lands package passes the House

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February 26, 2019

The House and Senate overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan package of more than one hundred public lands, natural resources, and water bills this month.

The public lands package, originally titled the Natural Resources Management Act (S. 47), was introduced in January 2019 by Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and placed directly on the Senate calendar for expedited consideration.

The lands package includes measures to improve the nation’s existing volcano monitoring network, reauthorize the National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Program (NCGMP), and permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). It also establishes or expands several national monuments and designates more than 1.3 million acres of new wilderness area in the U.S.

The Senate passed S.47 on February 12 by a vote of 92-8, followed by the House on February 26 by a vote of 363-62. Shortly after the House passed the bill, Democratic leaders renamed it the John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management and Recreation Act, honoring the late Michigan Democrat who died earlier this month and helped shepherd major environmental legislation into law during his career.

S.47 now awaits final approval by the president to be enacted into law.

Sources: CNN; E&E News; Library of Congress; Speaker of the House.