tv Utah National Park Designation Part 1 CSPAN December 27, 2017 6:06pm-8:01pm EST
sooner and keep to their schedules unfortunately we will be interrupted around 10:30 four votes we'll try to get to as much testimony before that beginning with opening statements. the subcommittee on federal lands meets with hr 4550 the ground my -- the grand deer case cosponsored by the entire utah congressional delegation. the antiquities act of 1906 provides six provides the president to designate national monuments on federal lands containing historic or prehistoric structures or other objects of historic or scientific interest. "also national monuments quote mac to be confined to the smallest area compatible with proper care and management to be protected. congressman stevens asked if they could ever be used like
the forest reserve bill in response the congressman stated certainly not. the object is entirely different it is to preserve these old objects of special interest in the southwest while the forest reserve bill preserves the forest and water courses. president roosevelt this to declare 1200 acres around the devils tower in wyoming is a national monuments since this time presidents have broadly interpreted to expand the size and justifications for national monument designation. 1996 president clinton in a breathtaking abuse of this law unilaterally declared 1.7 million acres blm management land in southern utah as the grand staircase national monument without any consultation with the utah delegation including
democratic representatives in his district of where they were located or the governor who was one of our witnesses today. one week before the announcement the administration assured the year senator they would not do this declaration with no such action contemplated. clinton drafted the order and secret consultation with leftist environmental groups and later learned to take future resource development impossible it devastated the state of utah and the local communities and cost the public school system hundreds of millions of dollars of future revenue deprive local families of high-paying local jobs to raise permits from these lands. to put this into perspective hurricane harvey inflicted $200 billion of damage when it slammed into texas this year. the low end conservative
estimate is $223 billion just from economic activity from mineral development alone. the administration only discover their designation included 176,000 acres of land set aside for support of the public schools the day before they made the announcement. no one person should have the authority to lock up millions of acres of land with a stroke of a pen. by giving congress authority over public lands the constitution guarantees all focus will be heard when the decision affecting millions of acres of land is made. the people expect their government to listen to those affected and not just out-of-state special interest groups. they have every right to
demand congress reassert its role on their behalf. this seeks to write the wrong to do it the constitutional way to open hearings and congressional action. to create the six national park the escalon tape park and that is historically important pioneer trail and has three distinct monuments grand staircase, and escalante comprised of local officials to oversee the management plan and a national park we have a distinguished panel of witnesses and i am looking forward to their testimony i ranking -- recognize the ranking member.
we will hear testimony on the grand their case escalante enhancement act representative stuart introduced to look at those recently designated by president trump to create a new national park. under normal circumstances legislation established a new national park with bright lung --dash bipartisan support but with a proposed bill are not normal. in 1996 president clinton designated the grand staircase escalante national monument for 20 years communities have grown and diversified and thrived. this is the story we will hear from the owner of one canon outdoor and she will also tell us how last week's announcement to repeal the grand staircase escalante to replace it with three
monuments can hurt the business and livelihood of others. president trump based his action without legal authority on a review conducted by the secretary which we have yet to see. during this review receiving 2.8 million public comments in favor of moving all national monuments. ultimately they advised the president to alter the existing national monuments this recommendation was based on a visit to eight national monuments and surrounding communities as we hear from witnesses today the secretary refused to meet with small business owners who live in those communities that depend on the national monuments and public land it is unfortunate
tax dollars were wasted on a report to justify the action beyond the scope of the president's authority under the antiquities act. only congress can shrink the national monuments which is why last week's proclamation is already challenged in court. some question the timing of the bill just two days after the president made his proclamation. i have maps with the state of utah that confirms there was an agreement and i asking animus consent to put those in the record as part of this hearing. >> without objection. >> reality is congress has acted on numerous occasions to ratify from the clinton designation legislation to exchange liens with $20 million were appropriated with the mining claims finally
to point out there is not a witness on blm or national park service this is troubling since they are creating a national park managed by the unelected board of those of state and local government additionally to have a purpose that is contradictory to the 1916 act under the circumstances the review is appropriate and necessary inconsistent. hundreds of letters from local businesses and community organizations have poured in the last couple of days and i ask unanimous consent to enter these that we would consider these as we examine this bill. >> without objection. >> i yield back. >> we now recognize the chairman of the national
committee. >> if it is okay with you without i do have an opening statement but can we hear from congressman stewart force -- first? be met without objection now the congressman from utah to my to my colleagues and he ranking members thank you for letting me speak to you. about a bill that is extremely important to my district. the grand staircase escalante enhancement act as already stated over 20 years ago president clinton stood in the state of arizona, not utah with the stroke of a pen using the antiquities act declared 2 million acres of land in a new time as the grand staircase monument i am
pleased that secretary lovett who was a governor at this time will in lightness into that deception we were subject to the federal government upon promised it would create a boom of tourism but over two decades later there has been some increasing tourism but not to economically sustain these communities. in 2015 the county had to declare a state of emergency based on declining and moment in the schools they are dying because families could not stay in the county and they could not stay because there were so few jobs left of sustaining a family. tourism alone cannot sustain these communities. i support tourism and i am
proud of my stay i would love for everyone in the country to enjoy this beautiful state but this is a matter of common sense. name me a job you can sustain a family may to october ask business owners how much do you pay your employees? waitresses? those that make the beds in hotels? it is not enough to raise a family. some say this threatens business that is silly how is creating a national park endangering tourism? the intent is to do the opposite to foster and increased tourism. the situation has been forced on residents with a misguided step of policy reminding is washington has a bad habit to draft policy without giving local communities a seat at the table i was reminded this
morning of common elites in hollywood and corporate ceos being dishonest many couldn't find this area on the map if they had to think of never been to utah or had a conversation with anyone that has been impacted. i spent five years in an effort to strike a balance while also providing access through the local economy. the key to success is finding creative solutions that benefit both the tourism while preserving our culture and this act does that to create three new separate national monuments increase a new national park. i will take a moment to explain the bill first it creates three national
monuments preserving over 1 million acres of federal land while allowing access for hunting and trapping and fishing also creates a management counsel of officials locally this is unprecedented to give local leaders a voice and a seat at the table this is a county that 93% is controlled by the federal government why would anybody object giving the local community a voice how it is managed? finally the road it is only fitting that utah preserve this area. lastly the legislation creates the six park it is a win for conservation and activist in the local communities to increase tourism giving a
much-needed boost to the local economy giving them a voice in their own backyard. in addition to provide infrastructure spending to make resources available such as trails and restrooms and roads. i love utah i could live anywhere in the world but i chose to live in utah because i love to hike and ski and i want to preserve that. this gives us an opportunity to do that. it truly is a win-win situation i urge calling symbol sides support that. i yield back. >> any questions? thank you for your testimony. >> we will do a round of questions.
congressman stewart did you say 93% of the land is held by the federal government? be my guest. 96% is federally owned. >> off the tax rolls. >> exactly. >> what impact does this designation have on the 90 to percent of the land in the county the federal government holds? can you imagine being a locally elected official to be responsible for roads and schools everything the community needs to survive but having 93% of your tax base taken out from underneath you? it is incredibly difficult and you will hear from locally elected officials that leave them coming to washington d.c. constantly begging for help as they don't have the authority or the ability to manage their own affairs. >> because it is off the tax rolls they should be giving them tax revenues from that was there any productive activity prior?
you make yes there was and that. >> what was supported? >> we used to have a thriving commuter industry it has been decimated because of these policies. we had mineral development that is completely taken off the table. >> so they were held by the federal government they were still able to be put to productive use for the remaining community. >> exactly right. so now it made impossible by the way to make an important point they didn't know they had the multiple use but they still manage that in such a way it was pristine enough to still be designated as a monument it is not like washington d.c. said what a mess we need to save them they managed it very well.
it was still pristine enough to be a national monument. they are not smart enough to do this we need someone in washington d.c. to do that for them. >> i wish they will state where the federal government old 1% would consider what would happen to their communities of the federal government took over 93% of their land, then imposed her coney and restrictions to prevent these lands to be put to any productive activity. i feel like i am standing up for the little guy, the families who just want to keep their families together instead their kids say i would love to ranch with you but we can't because the permits have been taken i will move to the city instead.
>> in this process of taking that 93% of the land with productive use i assume they were fully consulted by the federal government, hearings held in maximum input from the local community? >> i appreciate your sarcasm. of course that was not the case which is one of the primary objections. if people felt they had a voice it wasn't like they had an opportunity to make their input be heard if the decision the other way they would accept that they understand they can't decide everything all they are asking for is give us a chance to tell you what this is done to our community and families. >> perhaps that is why the constitution gives to congress and not the president authority over public lands
though decisions like this that affect the likelihood of families across the west, to be done in the open with full hearings and consultation of the local communities and voted upon by all representatives of the people after open deliberations not by a single individual with a stroke of the pen acting in secrecy and worse, misleading the local representatives of the community of his ultimate intent. >> i will say thank you for saying that and i agree. >> in light of the fact we will be called for votes and a panel that has travel the distance to be here i will yield my time to the representative. >> thank you.
>> thank you ranking member. and congressman stewart or your service and your representation of your community. but i want to make sure i understand the bill that you present to us. can you confirm the bill does not peel the 900,000 blm acres of wilderness study areas? within the original grand staircase there was 900,000 acres of blm wilderness study areas. will they be maintained? >> this bill codifies the presidents action of last week some of those reside within
the national park and they will be managed as a national park. >> we are talking about the monuments. >> it doesn't repeal. >> section 13 is quite ambiguou ambiguous. >> we would be happy to work with you to clarify that. >> so you say those 900,000 acres will remain wilderness study acres? >> i don't want to say misunderstanding i mean generally that the assumption that it repeals any protections on that is not true. they are still federally owned lands and federally managed like before. >> so your answer is those 900,000 acres will remain as wilderness study acres? >> that's true.
>> there will be approximately 677,000 acres of federal public land your bill would potentially open up a 677,000 acres of federal public land formally turned the use of the land no longer within the grand staircase you will open those up to oil potentially gas or coal leasing as well as mining? so you understand now we open these to the development? >> these would be managed like any other federal land if they are local and there is no resources or gas resources at this point i don't think anyone speculates there are, they would be subject to all
protections. >> now you are potentially opening up. >> i appreciate you bringing up that point because that is one of the things we want to do. i am not hiding that. of course we are trying to do that for the local community to make these resources available so they can have opportunities taken from them. >> i yield back. >> to any other members have questions for mr. stewart? thank you for bringing this bill you may remain and participate. we know after the second panel to come forward.
and the chairman recognizes you now i will do my opening statement now as history teacher to go through the history of the grandstand -- staircase as the memo told the president that monuments proposed by the president do not require approval because it does not require action there was a six series of memos asking president clinton to do something for his reelection campaign to help overcome the negative use mom -- views of clinton designation of a new monument would have a compelling reason to enthusiastic support the administration the opposition comes from those that are unlikely to support the administration under any
circumstance so in 1982 finishing third in utah obviously this was easy pickings. march 19, 1996 once again memos went through to the white house the letter that needed to be signed because it had to look as if the president initiated this not the interior department to avoid compliance and i'm quoting it only asked for information it would provide it. asking for a broader review is clear there are more compelling areas for this nation than utah park and one week later in another memo they said these lands are not really endangered which is one of the criteria to use the antiquities act. then another week later another report that said the grand canyon recreation area
because mckenzie and others if the package ultimately does not seem adequate. what they talk about adding on to the package later is what this bill is designating as a national park. as late as july 1996 omb were worried because a letter was not signed once again sending another memo to the white house thing it doesn't have to be sent but proposed and signed and in august another memo went to the white house resigned having to wait because the chief of staff wanted time to talk to western democrats before they signed or introduced anything. september 9 news reports came leaking out of the washington post and other areas a monument would be designated. september 9 they told utah delegation no decision had been made.
secretary babbitt told senators hatch no decision had been made i can tell you categorically no decision has been made three days later with a phone call to senator bennett the white house said we denied these reports to anybody who said this will happen does not know what they are talking about my decision has been made. on september 9 is when the governor called the white house to find out the truth. that is the decision on the situation how grand staircase escalante was established it was not in need of protection and in fact other areas were in greater need but was added simply to get enthusiasm of an election not going for clinton regardless. i yield back my time i welcome the guests who are here and to listen to your testimony in
recognizing the former governor of the state of utah who has come to us today from salt lake city. >> chairman bishop and ranking member, thank you for the invitation to appear i have been asked recount the history of the way in which the grand staircase escalante came forward from my perspective at the time. grand staircase escalante was done in stealth it happened under wraps with no consultation done with any state or county or local leaders of utah or our people. none.
worse, deliberate effort to conceal to keep the planning process out of view. secrecy was so vital of a concern to this endeavor the administration denied the decision was made even as bleachers were assembled on the north rim of the grand canyon the incessant secrecy was documented multiple times. once in a letter from the interior department wrote quote i cannot emphasize confidentiality too much if word leaks out it probably won't happen. so take care. the need for secrecy reinforced in the memo from the council on environmental quality director. she said to another white house colleague any public
release of information will probably foreclose the presidents option to proceed. president clinton announced the creation of the monument september 18, 1996. not from a public announcement or an entry into the federal registry but as from newsweek referenced from the washington post. i had days of calls of inquiries by me and the federal delegation and others to every level of the executive branch. i was told by the secretary of interior directly his department was not involved suggesting i call the white house which i did. i was told they were not sure
with that report came from and i asked for a meeting with the president or the chief of staff. i was finally granted one september 17, the day before the announcement. at the same time as i suggested they deny the plan they had white house advance people on the north end preparing for the event. on 1:58 am in a.m. in the morning i received a call from the president he was gracious, but he said to me i am just now beginning to review this matter. i was back in salt lake city at this time when the announcement was made on the north rim in arizona. this was a piece of land equal
in size to the state of rhode island, delaware and the district of columbia combined. this is not the way public land decisions were ever intended to be made. 1976 the nation made the important public policy decision the federal lands policy management act it requires careful process of public plan should be system of government it is meant to keep that many people from having that much power there was land within the grand staircase that needed protection but the presidents order went way beyond which was necessary or prudent. second those circumstances surrounding that amounted to abuse of power and protocol
that was so egregious in salting the concept of democracy itself. all this does not consider the ongoing nature of the antiquities act congress need to refine that for ongoing misuse. >> thanks for your testimony now we look at chairman of the board of commissioners from garfield county utah. welcome. >> good morning. i'm a garfield county commissioner and a lifetime resident of garfield county. one of the best places on the planet. frankly i am tired of all of the propaganda, 21 years of stories about the grand staircase that is not true so i am glad you are giving me an opportunity to come back here
to tell the truth. and anybody today does not believe what i have to say come on out. 1.7million acres it is about 2 million after the trust land was consumed by the process within the boundaries of the grand deer case 2 million acres. garfield county and perspective is the size of connecticut 93% of my county is federal land. 3.5% private. from the county perspective, if you ever tried to do taxes or collect revenue put that into perspective how to manage a county. but that isn't the point. the point is there has been
negative impacts. number one school enrollment prior to the grand staircase 150 children. congressman stewart declared a state of emergency we did not make that up county commissioners did not do that but at the request of the school district because the enrollment numbers had dropped at 51 children. seven through 12th grade everyone here listening nose how hard that would be to educate 51 children seven through 12th grade. if all of this economic benefit talked about is true, why did the school enrollment drop? number one it is obvious the traditional use is of the land was taken away from us.
another point, probably 20% of that monument is visited. i don't doubt that. i applaud the fact you try to do something with that 20% that 80% of all land mass, on out the roads have been close it is just a blm rangeland like you would find anywhere in the western united states. i am sorry people will not travel from all over the world to look at sagebrush and blm land there is no tourism value. why? it was tied up for political reasons to stop coal mining and limit and prohibit traditional grazing practices. as far as grazing goes there
is a story that animals on the ground is what it is but that is not true. those have been suspended that means you cannot run them on the land. why? because we have not been able to do actual range recovery projects. we haven't been able to maintain the land. that western land 1934, created the blm the way i understand it was made to do recovery projects. all this blm land is still monument but no recovery projects. doesn't just hurt cattle the mule deer and erosion problems and invasive weed problems
with juniper encroachment western land has to be maintained. i'm sorry there is a radical environmentalist that say leave it alone but you cannot do that with blm land. that is why the blm was created. in closing, i applaud the effort i just ask please look at all of the facts don't get wound up with political agenda. thank you for your time. >> thanks for your testimony that chair now recognizes the general manager for willow canyon. >> thank you chairman and ranking member and members of the subcommittee. i am manager of willow canyon outdoor company i'm wildly passionate about my homeland.
i came to talk about our local economy and how grand staircase escalante supported that over the last 21 years. with the op-ed piece i wrote as a review of the national monument began. with my husband and two small children i settled purchasing a dilapidated commercial building on one side a shuttered barrage cradle decades of junk and on the other an abandoned bakery. all signs from enterprises to like ghost on either side of our dream. we stripped our small building to the bones opening just in time for christmas. we underestimated the challenges in this rural town. all long winter twitched into a hard year we slowly grew the
savings quickly shrank. the following year, 1986 president clinton provoked the antiquities act. for grand staircase escalante and was controversial at the time. still in a couple of decades since i have witnessed positive outcomes of our community and a myriad of visitors from around the world at gather here in all. long -- off. now the car can be serviced next door and now the three-story hotel and two additional four-story hotels of open down the street and another under construction now there is a new bakery and in fact several new restaurants are thriving but you need a reservation. that was inconceivable 20 years ago. in the morning a host of outfitters will show you the grand staircase.
over 120 guides hold permits on grand staircase escalante utah outdoor recreation provides 110 jobs that depend on protecting publicly. protection cannot be outsourced creating a diverse spectrum of revenue flow extending well beyond travel and tourism. providing an extraordinary quality of life. people choose to retire in the area or keep a second home summer entrepreneurs mom -- some are entrepreneurs increasing property values and income and visitation is exploding 1 million people last year while countless others visited independently. transient room taxes increased by 24% year to date.
the chamber of commerce has been vocal advocates of the monument with the town of 4000 businesses organized that drew for thousand citizens. the destruction of the monument threatens our economic future with the stroke of a pen to reduce the monument by half put into fragments with deluded protections the utah delegation is bent on extraction. we are offered national park and preserve like no other national park you know that does not respect the organic act and enshrined grazing and mandates hunting with a mix of hikers and children. the county commissioners would dominate management. this is unprecedented. those who manage the public land for those opposed 360
doubletree the trucks drive through everyday damaging the tourism economy and rule of life. nor will grazing save us. cattle ranching has great cultural significance but is a marginal enterprise in the high desert is why it is subsidized. agriculture represents only a tiny portion of the region's economy economy. the national monuments are wildly popular as the comment. plainly shows they favor protection of their monuments on the local level there were 80 letters submitted advocating for the monument. to attack national monuments for the local communities ignoring the will of the american people and this land belongs to all americans. to codify the end traveling of
the grand staircase is to disrespect that. to throw in a national park. >> thank you for your testimony now we have the managing director of the office of tourism from salt lake city. >> good morning mr. chairman and ranking member. and members of the subcommittee. i am here to testify in support of hr4558 establishing grand staircase escalante in south-central utah. if you have been to utah you know that mother nature played favorites providing us the greatest snow on earth and spectacular red rock landscapes. this proposed national park features winding slot canyons
or sandstone domes and plat tools and juniper was land against pallets of red giving this area national park recognition that is long overdue. the bill protects these beautiful places in perpetuity. for some of the best exploration and recreation on earth. the amenities offered in national parks including trails, signage and transportation access and parking and staff will enable us to properly welcome visitors from utah and all over the world. the designation will generate prosperity in the economically distressed region of the state. generating in spending last year to create more than
140,000 to creating household relief of $1226. the mighty five promotion with a campaign that followed are the most successful campaign in utah history exploit 72 billion of economic benefit. with a larger share of the tourism prosperity. the attractive place to visit is also more attractive to work or relocate a business and as a way to accomplish his goals. to be located at the midpoint
of one of the most glorious roads on earth the all-american road scenic. two of utah's five national parks bookend the highway price canyon and b-uppercase-letter to the northeast 122-mile ribbon of road with the new national park in the middle would be the unparalleled triangle of adventure and discovery. utah's economy is the best in the nation but a silent recession in rural communities. they cannot find work to sustain them. the governor has called on residents to work together to create 25000 jobs by 2020. grand staircase escalante is a missing puzzle piece to create many jobs. you may wonder why we are not
already promoting this area? need to feature destinations on the website the lack of funding for the blm staff have made it impractical. to put it simply it is not safe for many visitors. national park status and all amenities that come with it is the important tool for making the landscape more accessible. and it will spread the love. it is important to note the national parks are severely underfunded the zion national park at a 60% increase in visitation since 2010 paired with 3.7% funding cut that is not tenable while national
park status will improve investment it is essential that i know this is important to congressman stewart looking at long-term investment for generations to come. in summary investing in the landscape is a path to jobs in vibrant communities deserving to have their children stay in the community where they are raised the escalante canyon national park and preserve is a breakthrough. >> things to the witnesses normally we go in seniority order depending upon the circumstances i will begin by recognizing mr. stewart and i thank you for giving me some
time but votes are coming and we need to go quickly. are you aware there are national parks that allow for grazing at this time? >> yes. >> how many? >> i don't know. >> 20. are you aware him support hunting? >> i am aware of preserves, yes. >> would you suggest we would repeal those hunting and grazing rights that allow for that? >> i would not necessarily but it is able to move to suggest without the maps it is difficult to comment on the specifics but i do know the area my son broke his foot at the waterfall.
the landscape is broken and challenging terrain to put hikers and trapping in the same area is a challenge trapping would be difficult. >> i think it is possible i do agree some of it is challenging but it is done in other parts i am glad you don't suggest repealing it but your primary interest is tourism? is that true? your own personal financial interest? >> it is although we also sell books and espresso. we have 27 employees. >> , to pay your employees? >> between ten and $20 per hour we do have health benefits also a simple ira retirement plan.
>> or any of them seasonal? >> no. >> ten dollars an hour roughly $20000 per year. can you raise a dollar and $20000 per year? >> i would turn that question back to you and ask you to reflect on the minimum wage. we are trying to stay ahead of that. >> okay. my point is the claim is made, again i support tourism, we are proud of tourism and we want you to do well. we want you to have 100 employees but the reality is it is very difficult to raise a family in the tourism industry. some do very well but many are seasonal the vast majority are seasonal. the point is that perception is made if they do well, they
>> the short-term rentals. there is a housing shortage in our area. our construction businesses been driven by that but it's not keeping up with the demand. that's one of the problems. >> i would like to just be clear, you support the ministry and are asking us to encourage there, you are opposing the creation of a national parks. >> i oppose it as described in this bill, i'll be very solid on that. and the reason is? >> i feel like this codifies an appropriate decision on an economy that comes to rely over two decades on the national monument. >> but were trying to help you and create more tourism not
less. >> next is mr. diego. >> representative stuart, i would have gladly have you jump on our bill if you're interested minimum wage for workers. in the chairman of the garfield county commission, select correct? >> yes or. >> we talk about protecting the resources better, what qualifications do you believe are your management team has to and it managed national park? >> i give an example. by the way bryce canyon national park, that's 35000 acres. you still have a national monument they control, it's over 1 million acres.
but to get back to your question, give you a good example. a lot of this land needs to be recovered. sage grass has been a threatened species. did you know we can to projects to recover the habitat for that species within the old boundaries of the monument, we cannot to recovery projects that's a classic example. about 100 yards across the street were doing recovery projects, now, these projects happening are happening in the same building that the monument is managed in. they're the same people. as far as anything changing, you're just changing the management from blm monument stuff to the field office staff.
so for us to work for with those folks, absolutely. i work with harry barber all the time to do those. >> since you're familiar with national park service i'm sure you'll agree it's not minister multiple uses. this is what you're reeling against in your testimony. the mission is to protect wildlife everything that this bill takes away. you said your county does not have the money to manage the land is that correct? >> those are federal lands. we can't manage them. there managed by the monument staff. >> but you will have money to manage them outside that boundary. >> we won't manage them will have input on the. >> i misunderstood.
>> we work with the people that work for the blm. >> if this moves forward it to be turned over to who? the counties? you can insert held a lot, but you can tell me just like this we can manage those lancelot better than they been managed. >> so if this new sword it would be turned over to those within that. how much money do you have in the budget. >> we will not be managing those lands. the governments blm park service would be managing them. the county would not be managing the lance, is like saying do you want to transfer me that when, transfer me that long. >> they should let's get back to that question, if you're talking
about -- >> what is that mean when the management plan, that sounds like the local management organization. >> but who owns the land? if you want me to manage them and bear the cost, i will. >> were talking about the actual text of the amendment. >> the reality is -- >> moving on. do they receive payments to carry out services such as rescue and other services. >> are you kidding me? on that land it's actually pennies about 800 30,000 per year.
>> what's your point? you claim that there's no local voice but is not sure there's an extensive local planning that went into the management plan that did include part of this committee that you served on? >> there was input, but since then where did the 12 heartbeat rule come from? on 64% of the grand staircase national monument you can only have 12 force, well six horse heartbeats and six cowboys. 64%. that was never in the original plan. that was made up by the monument staff. the 12 heartbeat rule.
>> had left her up this but unfortunately the gentlemen's time has expired. >> let me try to get some clarity. using the same word with different definitions. is this a management team that you'll come up with a management plan about how it will be developed. >> correct. >> will you then run that plan or the blm run that plan. >> the blm will run and fund the plan. so when you're talking about management plan here talking about the rules of engagement of how it will be run, you will not be running it. the federal government will still be running and paying for it. when this was originally established there are 377 acres of civil lands within monument, where they covered in the proclamation that clinton did? >> on the day before i pointed
this out to the presidents chief of staff who made it clear that had not been contemplated. they were not aware of the. >> how long did it take you to work out a deal to manage that account for the act acres? >> a matter of years. >> if this had been done by congressional action or the administration working with the state of utah would you have solve these problems ahead of time? >> they would have been solved in principle that would happen more quickly and efficiently. >> if this monument is created it will be outside of the town of escalante. set the town that has the greatest financial problems going forward? >> yes sir.
>> -- is on the southern end of it. >> when people do tourism down there i'm always going to powell. in your estimation if there is economic development taking place and kidnap, can it be related to the grand staircase are some of it going to other places like the graying canyon? >> a big part the tourism is also driven by zion national park. certainly some would be related to the region but most would be the areas you highlighted.
>> to be honest, you can pay your employees what you want them, pay them more money. governor leavitt, is this designation of the national monument oh one and done or is this happened since that time as well? >> it has been used repeatedly over the course of time. >> this committee strikes out a cap act that would guarantee public involvement before the designation and if you're going to down sign in the public input in that as well. do you think that's a wise use of time and energies. >> i don't know other circumstance were public ask her created other than the antiquities act which does not require or not carried out. the antiquities act is unique, wrong, not democratic, and needs to change. >> thank you. one other thing, oftentimes we
have miscommunication what the term management means. their special interest groups out there trying to confuse the as if one is synonymous to the other. they are not. as we continue to talk about what the systems can do their separate entities and should be recognized as such. because i respect this subcommittee so much because i said shared i yield back. >> threes were going out of order is because of flight schedules and other concerns. >> thank you mr. chairman. this question is for cover levitz. and i want to thank the panelists for traveling all the way from utah to washington, i
hope that's not calling us to vote. there's a lot of issues that have been raised about the initial legality in the process to which president clinton had done this. i want to make clear that right after he issued this everywhere that in the hundred and fifth and hundred and six congress that congress ratified these new boundaries, talked about buying out and provided resources and governor you signed the land exchanges between the state and federal government pursuant to the federal law that was passed, the federal courts have dismissed all claims about the
illegality, especially -- that upheld the legality of this that has been upheld in the appellate courts also. my question is if there is all these questions about legality, what did president bush do about this? why are we waiting all these years later? >> i don't think for a moment you would defend the level of secrecy that was used in acting public policy in the context of the grand staircase. >> thank you. i realize you raised issues about that. but i'm talking about the overall legality and the challenges in the courts and that we must assume that there may have been problems in the
process he of race but this was legally done under the antiquities act and the courts have upheld it without not so? >> some eight years later the court did include the president was in his rights of the chief executive. i have argued that are to be changed there have been lots of issues that are not here that this was done for political reasons, it's not legal, it overextended his boundaries and they have already said that is not true. >> it's hard to argue this wasn't done for political purposes.
>> we appreciate that question. >> u.s. congressman about the bush administration. the antiquities act was used in the bush administration. however, there was substantial public process and i recognize today is not the day to talk about the antiquities act. i'm here because this is unfinished business. by the way,. >> there's questions were raised in the federal court in the federal courts did not say that they were very violated. >> i'm here arguing that this bad outcomes comes when things miss use appropriate language. this was bad policy. i think what the president it was enacting a separate policy. this committee by this hearing will have exceeded by proportion
any public process. >> i think the courts will have to deal with that issue, whether in fact a subsequent president has the right to change previous actions in terms of masses change of land for both monuments and other federal lands. i'm sure that will be a question for the courts. >> i think we're debris in the halls of congress we ought not to argue more about process and more about policy. the president of the united states in this case changed the policy. >> and the congress agreed with the president and the courts agreed. >> but this committee is now considering in an organized and thoughtful way if lands are to be used in a particular way. >> thank you. we have one more round of questioning.
>> thank you for being here today, to take one issue with the comment on utah having the best-known earth, i think that's in colorado. i appreciate you being here. we've admired utah's program what you labeled as mighty five. was there marketing advantage to say we have this great portfolio parks to visit own boarded in hands as i read the bill to create three more monuments be the mighty six and adding monuments, with that be a plus in terms of creating economic development for the communities that probably need them in the areas to be able to help those
communities? >> thank you for the question. i'll continue the discussion afterward about the greatest on earth. the mighty five campaign has been nationally recognized as a breakthrough campaign that differentiated utah in a profound way. it has led to the most successful years of marketing and economic benefits the state has ever experience from touri tourism. having another national park, particularly in this remarkable area would be a huge a bill to our economic development strategy. the elegance of this is that it's a combination of this
remarkable asset that has not been accessible for many years. and a remarkable need in these local communities that we talked about that have so much economic distress. this ribbon of road, 122 miles of the most beautiful road on earth. the brilliance of proposing this national park right in the heart of that road gets me energized about the marketing potential for the next wave of the mighty five, whether it's a mighty six or other ideas. >> the benefit perhaps to approaching it, each of these areas does have unique and distinct characteristics that
you would be able to individually market and then collectively package in terms of promoting tourism. >> yes, and susan has made some good points. one point is that you want every national park to have a unique offering, to reflect the local community, its heritage, its history, and the unique things available in that area. some examples of what we would highlight around this would be certainly are dark skies. utah has some of the best dark skies on earth and where being recognized for that. dinosaur bones, paleontology. history of 90 million years of dinosaur bones, native american artifacts. great mormon heritage.
the hole in the rock road that goes through is a road that mormon pioneers travel as they establish themselves in the area. the point is, i think to seasons question be a front country might be very accessible and perhaps a backcountry word but still be assessable to backpackers and other uses. that's the beauty of it is being able to design what the should be for this region. >> we've heard those same comments particularly with sage grass and management the state of colorado as well.
can you provide clarity in terms of the actual role the commissioners would be able to play. what are the distinct benefits you would bring in terms of developing a plan. >> that will have to be yes or no answer. the rest will have to be in written response. >> thank you. i want to apologize, we have been called to vote. there's five minutes remaining in the first. we expect to have those concluded round 1125. nike patient hazard around here. we'll have to recess the hearing until votes are concluded around 1125. thank you for your intelligence and patience.
the chair will continue questions and continue with the ranking member. >> i join in the comments, we apologize for the delay. my question is with ms. hand. he said you lived your family to can have two years before president clinton's proclamation. you gave us a description by reading your op-ed about what it was like when he moved there and how it is today. i was curious, what was the economic base before you move there that resulted like with no service repair shop and everything close down. as the economic engine for them before that? >> one unfortunate thing that occurred was there is a lumber mill that was cutting trees on the north rim of the grand canyon area.
not close. they had used up the old growth forest that they were allotted and never retrofitted to cut small trees and therefore close down. that displaced about 200 families. only with their the largest employer in the county was the public sector, government work. the largest private employer now is the best friends animal sanctuary. when i move there they had 43 employees for now over 500. they have experienced tremendous growth in our important part of our economy. there sanctuary is an m-uppercase-letter canyon and again, quality of life and placement for the in a great
place for them to be for their operation. >> so would it be a correct statement that the economic base is now tourism related to this grand staircase? and to the other protected public lands in the area. i would emphasize that travel and tourism has a long rich history in command. a man named dave rust was born in the 1800s his wife was the fall the mayor. they set up ecotourism before there were roads or anything to support that. they went on horseback or pack mules and export the area. he did that for 33 years.
he became a long-standing tradition of ecotourism in the area. >> did you have a chance to participate in the initial management planning? >> yes. there were numerous meetings held in different communities open to the public. i was impressed with that process. i felt like it was a very safe environment for communication that was established by the blm. they heard the first voices a recorded what they heard in a public format. felt like if you participated in those or road in your concerns that they were incorporating that. a good example is the public attended many asked not to have
this monument which was first managed by the blm to be managed similar to the park service and instead to allow the outside communities to develop their businesses to support that. that's how they set it up and it's worked very well. >> thank you one quick question, your testimony is focused on the three parks being proposed with the scenic route 12 going through. he did not take a position on the quote reduction basically the grand staircase, do you have a position on that? >> i'm not the right person to speak on that. i would defer to people on both sides of that issue who have spent their entire working lives
trying to solve that problem. my experience and expertise is around tourism and as a result of that expertise develop good working knowledge of our national parks. but i do not pretend to have expertise in solving the larger, complex land issue that come with 65% of your land is owned by the federal government - thank you. i yield back. >> thank you to all of you on the panel who took the time to testify today. for the record i would like to get into the best snow on earth contest. living in the middle of the forest and next door to the wilderness area i have snowmobiles for two reasons.
one primarily is in the works case emergency situation as our only way out. never to come like to ride on a beautiful sunny day even though it's 40 degrees below zero. as a kid growing up i spent my time outside. i could still live outside. i prefer to i'm married to a woman who prefers the endorse. as a boy scout i had the chance to learn, live, and understand that traveling to some of the most beautiful parts of the country, my grandsons are boy scouts and they travel as well.
mr. pollock, could you expand on the restrictions that exist that prevent 25 or more from recreating in my name in areas? >> i will give you good example. it doesn't matter what religion you hold to, we are predominantly lds. we have similar programs to visit these areas. down in the hole in the rock area couple of years ago we had an lds youth activity where they were trying to take 30 or 40 individuals into the area the same trip and were forbidden from doing that now is cancel
because of the 12 heartbeat issue. you can have more than 12 heartbeats in certain areas of the monument. when i was a kid we grew up in tropic. my dad worked in the park service back then what is in the monument now we would go down on horseback to a remote area. that is traditionally like your boy scouts that's where they made sure we are on the right track in life. that has been prohibited as well. there is not only a function of the local churches to function our local role models carried on for years. so traditional uses like what you're talking about have been stopped.
>> not that i'm putting words in anybody's mouth. when you had the opportunity to experience a national monument that was more of a didactic learning experience as opposed to when you can utilize the national park as an experiential learning for people of all ages especially young boys and girls of our country. [inaudible] >> it's a very important years let's say the early teens, what we're proposing here we will have more experiential learning
going forward with that were talking about here? >> absolutely. a lot of the area is not like bryce canyon. >> the problem is when you take the land and you create a single use type monument that's what it was in a lot of areas, that is restrictive. that's nonsense to do that on this type of lamp. >> thank you. i yield back. >> devils tower was 1200 acres, that was the first national monument a natural phenomenon. this was 1.7 million acres.
you testified the bulk of this is simply open range. >> that's correct. >> how many to come each year to visit this 1.7 million acres of open rangeland? >> most cancel, and a two will drive vehicle. it's inaccessible for. >> i would assume the major tourist destinations within the monuments are more limited in their scope to the territory identified is that correct? >> yes. >> so, for setting aside the tourist destinations for freeing up rangeland which does not attract a lot of tourist.
>> you are doing that and that's why support this, you are doing the right thing. >> were not harming tourism, or protecting tourism. at the same time were opening up the rest of this to productive use. >> tourism was restricted and a lot of that monument. i was told when i was voted in that i was trying to promote tourism at the time and she said the monument was not created for tourism. it was created for the science study or something like that. the plan was not to promote tourism. were going to make that better. >> with the 12 heartbeat rule? >> that's the remote areas. it's one part of the management plant we can find but these agencies have their own agendas.
>> what is the 12 heartbeat rule? >> if it's a dog it has a heartbeat, you can only take the one dog. is this breaker? >> on 64% of that monument. i believe the 12 heartbeat rule applies without some sort of special usage. >> so if you have a scout troop of 13 people that would not be allowed? >> right. if you have scout triple 12 and they brought their dog that would be allowed. you can even take 12 of the scouts if the right a horse, a horse is a heartbeat according to this ridiculous rule they made up. >> so are the tourist areas currently designated within the
monument boundaries preserved under the boundaries of this new act? >> the monument is currently more of a drive through experience than a tourism, playset tourist can stop and visit and extend their stay. so, this legislation would create the national park that would guide the tourism experience. >> is that enhance tourism? >> yes. >> were not enhancing tourism but were also opening up vast areas for the regional economy. >> it's a dramatic enhancement of tourism. and safer, more defined experience for visitors.
>> you turned pennies for dollars, can you explain that? >> it's like 26 cents an acre is when it comes out to. i think county is 3.3 million acres of land. >> so you would gladly train the pill pennies for the many dollars this could generate for the county. if you are treated the same way as most of the counties east of the mississippi? it would make my trip for the fact came back.
>> additional questions i asked that you respond in writing to keep the hearing record open for to ten days. >> governor let me ask one more has leave here. as you look back on the history how you are involved in this, is there a clear way that this could have been done better to establish greater input and solve some of the problems before the declaration then after? >> ironically the first time ever heard you use the word monument occurred two years earlier when i had a meeting with secretary of interior to lay out a plan or idea we called
the canyon of the escalon tape. an original idea. to break the land into different uses and manage it according to its best most productive use. applied more protection to the most pristine of the lands more than is now extended. and it will cap land that could have been used in more productive uses to be used as such. that idea was rejected but in the course of a conversation there is a discussion between hannah member of the staff and use the word monument. i had no idea that's what they were discussing. the cheer point, if the state, local and federal government had worked together to care for the
land in a way that was focused on the land and the best use could've been done collaboratively, productive and successfully. as it is, we've had eight years of litigation and 20 years of conversation. we continue to visit it in a divisive way. needs to be done in a way that did not involve secrecy. >> i appreciate the comment. house want to commend mr. stewart for the legislation that's the process that were trying to do here. you're talking once again about we do a good marketing campaign in utah with the big five. what we have here is talking about having maybe six can be part of the campaign.
that comes up to about 835 acres combine for a five. this would come down from 1.7 million acres to something more manageable part of that campaign. there's another potential we have so you can make this from six to seven. if you going to do anything in my area, when things to market is to market the other activities. someone wants to come up golden spike you also have to be able to say what other things are available. we've never been able to do that with the grand staircase. but by going through this process we can actually come up with something that can be marketable, useful and safer which will encourage people to see it unattended. there's a reason for this plan to exist to be seen, it should
be seen. i think i'm hearing that coming from you that we can do better if we try to do it the right way. that process brings bad results. think that's what happened in 96. my misstating this at all? >> that's a very good summary. what you have outlined is consistent with a strategy i have rolled out in the state for the vision for next 10 - 20 years of tourism. around quality visitation, offering something to our customers that is different because it's in our beautiful landscape but also because we stop through that visitor experience to make sure it's
safe and unique design consistent with what the local communities want to accomplish. everything were talking about is exactly aligned with that strategy. >> thank you. you should realize, the second national park created was mac not i went and we gave it back to the state of michigan because you did better management than we did. >> the question is is a part of the upper lower peninsula. it's interesting the rationale. to set the record straight, it's part of the upper peninsula.
>> thank you mr. chair. in addition to ceding management control this provision would transfer the whole of the rock to the state of utah further advancing the federal lands transfer movement. proposals like this that the association to move the trade so show out of utah it's big business but it seems like politicians are driving a wedge between industry in the state. how did you feel when they pulled out of utah because of weather perceived as -- for public land? >> i think it was a great loss for utah in a number of ways. the loss of the outdoor retail was probably 50 million-dollar loss per year to the city of
salt lake. but the impact of this being in utah for a couple of decades is much larger. a printed our status and outdoor mecca. it has also given a very public blackeye tour state. there's been discussion of boycott on social media and in general negative press generated by that withdrawal from outdoor retailer. for be personally it's a loss because i've always enjoyed taking my staff there and i'll be less accessible and more expensive now. it's more than twice the driving time it's a couple hours drive
and i feel like they've lost an opportunity for enrichment. in the cost of doing business has greatly increased. >> how do you feel this bill further threatened senator i economy. >> my sense is that people in many cases will see a national park and think it's a great thing. when they visit him might not be what they expected. not a national park similar to others they have visited in the west. it may prove a disappointment to create unexpected circumstances. the negative press generated through the process of having the monuments knowing they are incredibly popular with american
citizens is damaging. this is making a lot of headlines and people are aware of this issue. >> how do you think tourists would feel, what they feel the same way about bryce canyon and zion national park if they could hunt the middle of those units with no input? part of that were transferred to the state. >> it would change the experience. this could prove to be a slippery slope. how will this impact our parks. the funding for parks has been in steady decline while attendance has been steadily increasing. the attendance is difficult to manage particular parks.
>> think your testimony was that it's probably put on us that we are not funding the national park service sufficiently. that's why there is a reduction in the services being rendered. i assume that you have dealt with the national park service yourself in utah? >> yes. >> and am i interpreting what you're saying correctly that the parks have been severely impacted by the lack of funding talking about federal funding. >> to agree it's a loss to utah that this outdoor major convention that is left now with $50 million here, set a correct statement? >> natural retailer convention was a wonderful part of the
tourism economy. we talk about failures of policy being about failures to communicate. that was a classic example where everybody tried hard to communicate but no one ever understood each other very well. >> the reason i'm optimistic about this bill is that it's a step towards positive communication. >> did you have a chance to conclude? >> i wanted to say it was a positive way i see this bill restarting the conversation around the things we agree on. there have been so many years of efforts to communicate will look
at it in the millions of acres category. everyone comes away unsatisfied the throughput interview has been heard or understood. i think the brilliance to what you're advancing is to take 100,000 precious acres that we agree should be preserved and visited a let's work together to figure out how to make it part of our national park system. >> will be brief. two things we can talk about. some people, feel disappointed, to agree with the. >> i think you're tried to give
an area of infrastructure so people can visit it. they can't right now. it brings up a good point as well. the emergency services, the county does that. we have to go out and get these folks back to the hole in the rock road you can how they get down that road, so in a park setting like brace canyon this is the perfect solution to the problem. >> having been there i've never been disappointed, spectacular seated read. does this allow for hunting so
we would reserve that i would agree that's correct i would conclude with this. to my friends into the chairman thank you for allowing us and considering the spell we tried to bring this where you did not have a winner or loser swear both sides have something they wanted and can claim as a victory. we had a wind with a protected western culture. thank you for your support of the bill. i yield back. >> images close with one final question on the antiquities act. antiquities act seems to be
clear. they can designate things of federal land prehistoric structures or scientific interest. it goes on to limit that senate must be confined to the smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected. 1.7 million acres hardly seems to fit. we have presidents and as owner how much clear we can make the language it is clear to my reading, however to the courts into the executive branch to constrain it to good judgment. obviously the need for more
precision. i would leave that to you to how that needs to be done. the language as it stands is not producing you. >> when you talk about management of the public lands for congress to look at such an authority is questionable. it's contrary to the architecture of the constitution. invites the abuse of power that world trying to correct. >> that concludes our questions. thank you for joining us. there's no further business we stand adjourned.
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