(PDF provides a complete and accurate display of this text.)
111th Congress Report
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
1st Session 111-335
TO AUTHORIZE THE ADDITION OF 100 ACRES TO MORRISTOWN NATIONAL
November 16, 2009.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on
the State of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mr. Rahall, from the Committee on Natural Resources, submitted the
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 118]
[Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]
The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred the
bill (H.R. 118) to authorize the addition of 100 acres to
Morristown National Historical Park, having considered the
same, report favorably thereon with an amendment and recommend
that the bill as amended do pass.
The amendment is as follows:
Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the
SECTION 1. ADDITION TO THE PARK.
The first section of the Act entitled ``An Act to authorize the
addition of lands to Morristown National Historical Park in the State
of New Jersey, and for other purposes'', approved September 18, 1964
(16 U.S.C. 409g), is amended--
(1) by inserting ``, from a willing owner only,'' after ``the
Secretary of the Interior is authorized to procure''; and
(2) by striking ``615'' each place it appears and inserting ``715''.
Purpose of the Bill
The purpose of H.R. 118 is to authorize the addition of 100
acres to Morristown National Historical Park.
Background and Need for Legislation
H.R. 118 would raise the acquisition ceiling for Morristown
National Historical Park in New Jersey from 615 acres to 715
acres. The park was established to preserve an area of great
importance to the Continental Army, which was quartered in
Morristown during January 1777 and the winter of 1779-1780.
General George Washington chose Morristown for the main
quarters of his troops because the area offered several
strategic advantages. The town was a two-day march from the
main British base in New York City. The Watchung Mountains and
the Great Swamp, which stand between New York and Morristown
acted as natural defensive works. As a result, Morristown could
not be taken by a surprise attack. The various roads passing
through Morristown allowed the army to move in any direction to
counter the movements of the British. Because of its roads and
safe location, Morristown served as a military supply depot for
much of the war.
The park was established in 1933, and was the first
national historical park in the National Park System. The park
includes the Ford Mansion, where Washington made his
headquarters. Boundary changes have been enacted six times
since the park was established. According to the park's 2003
general management plan, residential development is
intensifying around the park boundary, and increasing the
acreage ceiling would allow the park to respond quickly to
opportunities for land acquisition from willing sellers.
The general management plan calls for a range of
conservation tools including easements and outright purchase,
with an emphasis on protecting resources from the encampment
period and preserving the historic character and solitude of
H.R. 118 was introduced by Representative Rodney P.
Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) on January 6, 2009. The bill was referred
to the Committee on Natural Resources, and within the Committee
to the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public
Lands. At an October 1, 2009, hearing before the Subcommittee,
a representative of the Department of the Interior testified in
support of the bill.
On October 28, 2009, the Subcommittee was discharged from
further consideration of H.R. 118 and the full Natural
Resources Committee met to consider the bill. Representative
Rob Bishop (R-UT) offered an amendment in the nature of a
substitute to add language ensuring that additions to the park
must be acquired from willing sellers only. The amendment was
adopted by voice vote. The bill, as amended, was then ordered
favorably reported to the House of Representatives by voice
Committee Oversight Findings and Recommendations
Regarding clause 2(b)(1) of rule X and clause 3(c)(1) of
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the
Committee on Natural Resources' oversight findings and
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.
Constitutional Authority Statement
Article I, section 8 and Article IV, section 3 of the
Constitution of the United States grant Congress the authority
to enact this bill.
Compliance With House Rule XIII
1. Cost of Legislation. Clause 3(d)(2) of rule XIII of the
Rules of the House of Representatives requires an estimate and
a comparison by the Committee of the costs which would be
incurred in carrying out this bill. However, clause 3(d)(3)(B)
of that rule provides that this requirement does not apply when
the Committee has included in its report a timely submitted
cost estimate of the bill prepared by the Director of the
Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of the
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.
2. Congressional Budget Act. As required by clause 3(c)(2)
of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, this
bill does not contain any new budget authority, spending
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in
revenues or tax expenditures.
3. General Performance Goals and Objectives. As required by
clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII, the general performance goal or
objective of this bill is to authorize the addition of 100
acres to Morristown National Historical Park.
4. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate. Under clause
3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of
Representatives and section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act
of 1974, the Committee has received the following cost estimate
for this bill from the Director of the Congressional Budget
H.R. 118--A bill to authorize the addition of 100 acres to Morristown
National Historical Park
H.R. 118 would authorize the National Park Service (NPS) to
acquire an additional 100 acres of land for the Morristown
National Historical Park (MNHP). CBO estimates that
implementing the legislation would cost about $10 million over
the 2010-2014 period, assuming appropriation of the necessary
amounts. Enacting the bill would not affect direct spending or
The 1,700-acre Morristown National Historical Park consists
of four noncontiguous units in heavily populated northern New
Jersey. Under H.R. 118, the NPS would acquire up to 100 acres
for the MNHP as properties located near one of the park units
become available for donation or sale from willing landowners.
Acquired properties would remain in their natural state and
would be used to buffer the park from local development.
Based on recent sale prices of land near the MNHP, CBO
estimates that acquiring land under H.R. 118 would cost the NPS
about $10 million over the next five years. For this estimate,
we assume that 9 acres of land would be donated to the NPS and
that the remaining 91 acres would be purchased. Total
acquisition costs could be lower if more acreage can be
acquired by donation or, alternatively, protected by purchasing
Based on information provided by the NPS, CBO estimates
that additional costs to revise signs, maps, and other
materials would be less than $100,000. We estimate that annual
costs to administer newly acquired properties would be minimal.
The bill contains no intergovernmental or private-sector
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and
would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.
The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Deborah Reis.
The estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant
Director for Budget Analysis.
Compliance With Public Law 104-4
This bill contains no unfunded mandates.
H.R. 118 does not contain any congressional earmarks,
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined in
clause 9 of rule XXI.
Preemption of State, Local or Tribal Law
This bill is not intended to preempt any State, local or
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported
In compliance with clause 3(e) of rule XIII of the Rules of
the House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law
proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new
matter is printed in italic, existing law in which no change is
proposed is shown in roman):
ACT OF SEPTEMBER 18, 1964
(Public Law 88-601)
An Act to authorize the addition of lands to Morristown National
Historical Park in the State of New Jersey, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of
the United States of America in Congress assembled, That, in
order to preserve for the benefit and inspiration of the public
certain lands historically associated with the winter
encampment of General George Washington's Continental Army at
Jockey Hollow in 1779 and 1780, and to facilitate the
administration and interpretation of the Morristown National
Historical Park, the Secretary of the Interior is authorized to
procure, from a willing owner only, by purchase, donation,
purchase with appropriated funds, or otherwise, not to exceed
 715 acres of land and interests therein which  715
acres shall include Stark's Brigade campsite and other lands
necessary for the proper administration and interpretation of
the Morristown National Historical Park: Provided, That title
to the property known as the Cross estate my not be accepted
until the property is vacant.
* * * * * * *
Twice during the Revolutionary War George Washington
decided on Morristown, New Jersey as the place to station the
Continental Army for the winter lull in fighting. There were
both military and civilian reasons to choose this area. With
the redcoats in firm control of New York City and the Atlantic,
it was essential that an inland route connecting rebel held New
England with South be kept open and Morristown was positioned
just right to keep this link from being severed. Morristown was
also the right place because George Washington had won over the
local population to support the American cause. He won their
support by insisting that his troops respect the property of
the people--even the property of Tory sympathizers.
Not only did Washington give strict orders that forbade the
Patriot forces from looting--in sharp contrast to the practice
of the British and Hessian forces--but he also gave the New
Jersey Militia as its major assignment, the mission of
protecting the property of New Jersey farmers from the foraging
parties of King George's Army. One of the leaders of the New
Jersey Militia who carried out the task of protecting property
from seizure was a young colonel named Frederick Frelinghuysen,
an ancestor of the bill's sponsor.
Therefore it is fitting that that the bill contains a
``willing seller'' provision to require the government today to
respect the property rights of the people just as the cold,
hungry and ill-equipped American soldiers did in and around
Morristown 233 years ago.