Proceedings, Debates of the U.S. Congress
(House of Representatives - May 03, 2017)
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[Page H3310] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] ANTIQUITIES ACT (Mr. LaMALFA asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.) Mr. LaMALFA. Mr. Speaker, this week in the Natural Resources Committee, we conducted an important hearing and review on the Antiquities Act. This is the process for which these days the President unilaterally can declare national monuments, thereby placing acres that are deemed to be preserved into a monument, which then cannot be touched by human hands as it is interpreted and enforced these days. Under President Obama, twice as many acres were placed into that type of monument status as all other Presidents combined over the history of the country. Now, what this means is that you can't have access for forestry, fire protection, and other things you need to do for human activity. Even access for hunting and fishing is oftentimes limited. What we need is to have a process where Congress can have approval of the Antiquities Act if one of these proposals comes into place. We need to have that so that the people will have access to their lands so they can be managed if need be. The size of the monument, yes, we have areas we need to declare and protect. But the size of the monument is very important as well because it doesn't need to be always hundreds of thousands, even millions, of acres. Indeed, under the act, the idea is that it would be under the smallest possible size to preserve the object. ____________________