FLATSIDE WILDERNESS ENHANCEMENT ACT; Congressional Record Vol. 164, No. 179
(House of Representatives - November 13, 2018)

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[Pages H9478-H9479]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]


  Mr. LAMBORN. Mr. Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and pass the 

[[Page H9479]]

(H.R. 5636) to designate additions to the Flatside Wilderness on the 
Ouachita National Forest, and for other purposes, as amended.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The text of the bill is as follows:

                               H.R. 5636

       Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of 
     the United States of America in Congress assembled,


       This Act may be cited as the ``Flatside Wilderness 
     Enhancement Act''.


       Section 3(d) of Arkansas Wilderness Act of 1984 (Public Law 
     98-508; 98 Stat. 2349) is amended by inserting ``and certain 
     land in the Ouachita National Forest, which comprise 
     approximately 640 acres, as generally depicted as 
     `Recommended Wilderness Area' on the map titled `Flatside 
     Wilderness, Recommended Wilderness Area', dated September 6, 
     2018'' after ``1984''.


       The wilderness addition created under section 2 shall be 
     known as the Bethune Woods-Flatside Wilderness. Any reference 
     in a law, map, regulation, document, paper, or other record 
     of the United States to such portion of the Flatside 
     Wilderness shall be deemed to be a reference to the Bethune 
     Woods-Flatside Wilderness.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from 
Colorado (Mr. Lamborn) and the gentlewoman from Hawaii (Ms. Hanabusa) 
each will control 20 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Colorado.

                             General Leave

  Mr. LAMBORN. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members 
may have 5 legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and 
include extraneous material on the bill under consideration.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentleman from Colorado?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. LAMBORN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, H.R. 5636 adds approximately 640 acres to the 9,500-acre 
Flatside Wilderness in the Ouachita National Forest.

                              {time}  1615

  This land has been studied and recommended as an addition to the 
wilderness by the U.S. Forest Service.
  The bill also names the addition after Congressman Ed Bethune, who 
served the people of Arkansas from 1979 to 1985.
  This relatively minor change will establish more manageable 
wilderness boundaries, allowing the Forest Service to take better care 
of the land. Most importantly, this new wilderness designation has 
local support and support from the Arkansas delegation.
  Mr. Speaker, I commend my colleague, Congressman French Hill, for 
introducing this legislation to benefit his district. I urge adoption 
of the measure, and I reserve the balance of my time.
  Ms. HANABUSA. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  This bill amends the Arkansas Wilderness Act of 1984 to designate 640 
acres in the Ouachita National Forest. We are pleased to work with our 
colleagues across the aisle to identify areas that deserve wilderness 
designation and to increase conservation opportunities for our most 
wild and serene places.
  This bill adds to a conservation legacy signed into law by President 
Reagan and demonstrates that protection of public lands can be a 
bipartisan priority. We look forward to continuing this work as we wrap 
up the year and move into the next Congress.
  Mr. Speaker, I urge a ``yes'' vote on the bill, and I yield back the 
balance of my time.
  Mr. LAMBORN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 5 minutes to the gentleman from 
Arkansas (Mr. Hill), who introduced the bill.
  Mr. HILL. Mr. Speaker, I thank my friend from Colorado for the time, 
and I appreciate the opportunity today to be on the House floor to talk 
about H.R. 5636, the Flatside Wilderness Enhancement Act, to preserve 
the wilderness areas for future generations of Arkansans.
  On October 19, 1984, President Ronald Reagan signed into law the 
Arkansas Wilderness Act, which set aside the first wilderness areas in 
the State of Arkansas. One of those wilderness areas created by this 
act was Flatside, which is located in both Perry County and Saline 
County, both of which are in my district.
  In 2005, the U.S. Forest Service recommended that these 640 acres be 
included in the national wilderness program, stating that adding these 
lands to the wilderness program would establish a more logical and 
manageable boundary for these areas and is consistent with the forest 
management plan.
  This measure is a first step in enhancing Flatside. Additional 
measures are being considered to study other U.S. forest lands that are 
suitable for addition to the area adjacent to Flatside. We are also 
working to restore certain adjacent areas that were in former private 
ownership to native species.
  Perry County offers something very special for Arkansans, visitors 
young and old alike, seeking a unique, authentic outdoor recreation 
experience. This tourism has had a positive effect on Arkansas' 
economy, especially in these largely rural counties. By increasing the 
wilderness area and promoting it, Arkansas, especially in Perry County, 
can attract more people to enjoy these natural resources and continue 
the trend of tourism's positive impact on Arkansas' economy.
  It is important to note that this bill is narrowly tailored to only 
place lands carefully selected by the U.S. Forest Service into the 
wilderness area. It will not affect any private property.
  On a personal note, Mr. Speaker, this bill is of particular 
importance to me because, as a young Senate staffer working on the Hill 
in 1984, I was able to work with then-Senator Dale Bumpers' office from 
Arkansas and Representative Ed Bethune's office and helped to secure 
the passage of the Arkansas Wilderness Act in the Senate. What a treat, 
three decades later, for me now to represent the Second District of 
Arkansas and see this good work continue, while also being able to 
recognize my predecessor, former Congressman of Arkansas' Second 
District, Ed Bethune.
  I believe naming this tract for Congressman Bethune is a proper way 
to recognize him for his dedicated service for conservation causes 
important to The Natural State. This enthusiasm is shared by the entire 
Arkansas delegation.
  Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my friends, Chairman Bishop and 
Representative Westerman, for their help in advocating for this bill 
that is so important to my district, and I urge my colleagues to 
support it.
  Mr. LAMBORN. Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the motion offered by the 
gentleman from Colorado (Mr. Lamborn) that the House suspend the rules 
and pass the bill, H.R. 5636, as amended.
  The question was taken; and (two-thirds being in the affirmative) the 
rules were suspended and the bill, as amended, was passed.
  A motion to reconsider was laid on the table.