January 07, 2009

Wyden Assists Swift Introduction of Public Lands Bill

Includes Five Wyden Wilderness Bills

Washington, D.C. - Maintaining his focus on preserving rare and valuable public lands in Oregon, Chairman of the Senate Energy Committee's Subcommittee on Public Lands and Forests U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today applauded the swift introduction of the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 (S.22) in the 111th Congress. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) today introduced Energy Committee Chairman Senator Jeff Bingaman's (D-N.M.) national package of lands bills that had passed the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee prior to the end of the 110th session of Congress, but were blocked by Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.).

"I regret that the Mount Hood, Copper Salmon and my other bills were not acted on last year because this new Congress has many new natural resource issues it needs to focus on, including thousands of new jobs and better management for our nation's forests," said Wyden. "I also regret that my bills were blocked last Congress because Senator Smith was my full partner in these efforts, and he deserved tremendous credit protecting some of Oregon's most special places. I feel very confident we will overcome my colleague's objections very shortly and pass this legislation on a bipartisan basis."

Oregon-specific bills wrapped into the Omnibus package include:

The package is likely to be voted on later in the week or in a weekend session of Senate business.