This was recently posted on the ATC website.
Public Lands Bill Approved by Senate
January 16, 2009 — The U.S. Senate passed S.22 – the omnibus Public Lands Act which will provide a number of provisions for the advancement and preservation of our National Trails System. ATC sent an open letter voicing our support for this act.
Next, the bill will move to the House where we hope it will find a swift passage. ATC will continue to track the progress of this bill, asking for support of ATC members and Trail supporters in the next phase. Stay tuned to this Web page for more information.
I am writing today in behalf of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy to encourage your consideration and support for S.22—the Omnibus Public Land Act which, following the favorable cloture rule passed by the U.S. Senate on Sunday, January 11, is likely to be considered on the floor of the Senate this week.
While the act includes more than 100 separate pieces of legislation that now have been consolidated into one omnibus bill, many of the components of the bill have been under consideration in the Congress for years. Of particular interest to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy are the provisions pertaining to the national trails system. Specifically, the bill would extend willing-seller land-acquisition authority to nine national scenic and national historic trails that currently lack such authority. The bill also authorizes three new national scenic trails (the New England NST, Pacific Northwest NST, and the Arizona NST) as well as a number of national historic trails. The bill also extends wilderness designation to more than two million acres of public lands including portions of the Jefferson National Forest in Virginia. It also authorizes a national conservation landscape system for lands administered by the Bureau of Public Lands as well as a forest restoration program within the USDA Forest Service.
Again, we urge you to vote in support of S.22.
Thank you for your consideration of this important legislation.
Here's a link to the original posting at ATC: http://www.appalachiantrail.org/site..._Land_Bill.htm