Bill to Expand Smith River National Recreation Area into Southwest Oregon Introduced

Smith River National Recreation Area .

Smith River National Recreation Area.

Press release from U.S. Representatives Jared Huffman:

[Yesterday]

U.S. Representatives Jared Huffman (CA-02) and Val Hoyle (OR-04) introduced the Smith River National Recreation Area (NRA) Expansion Act to protect Southwest Oregon’s scenic North Fork Smith River watershed and its world-class rivers, salmon strongholds, rare plants, clean drinking water, and recreation opportunities. The House bill is a companion to Senator Jeff Merkley’s legislation.

 

“The Smith River is a treasured part of the natural landscape in my district, and its designation as a National Recreation Area has created jobs, preserved vital resources and ecosystems, and ensured folks can experience its scenic beauty for generations to come,” said Rep. Huffman. “Expanding this designation into Oregon is a commonsense step to further protect this natural treasure and extend its many economic and cultural benefits to our neighbors in Oregon.” 

 

“I’m proud to introduce this legislation that is so widely supported by conservationists, businesses, and local governments in Southwest Oregon and Northern California,” said Rep. Hoyle. “Keeping the renowned North Fork Smith River watershed clean is pivotal for drinking water, tourism and fishing jobs, salmon populations, and outdoor recreation. This is a special place that future generations should be able to enjoy.”

 

“When we come together to safeguard our state’s natural wonders, we can create jobs, protect resources, grow our economy, and make sure future generations of Oregonians can enjoy our incredible public lands,” said Senator Merkley. “I thank Representative Hoyle for introducing this critical legislation in the House that I’ve been championing in the Senate. Today, we’re one step closer to expanding the Smith River National Recreation Area—a commonsense win-win for adventurers across the Northwest, folks interested in preserving the state’s beautiful places, and Southern Oregon’s economy.”

 

The Smith River NRA Expansion Act would:

  • Add 58,000 acres in Curry County Oregon to the existing Smith River NRA in Northern California that currently stops at the California/Oregon border.
  • Designate 75 miles of rivers as Wild and Scenic, including Baldface Creek, Chrome Creek and nearby streams.
  • Permanently prevent new mining projects in the recreation area.
  • Allow critical wildfire prevention work in the area to continue.

 

“On behalf of the more than 300 businesses we represent, we thank Congresswoman Val Hoyle and Congressman Jared Huffman for their leadership and assistance,” said Cindy Vosburg, Executive Director of the Crescent City-Del Norte Chamber of Commerce. “This legislation provides a permanent ban on new mining claims on Oregon lands within the Smith River watershed which helps ensure our community will continue to have high quality drinking water and one of the cleanest rivers in the USA. This is very important to our community.”

 

“The expansion of the Smith River National Recreation Area completes a conservation effort initiated over thirty years ago,” said Grant Werschkull, Co-Executive Director for Smith River Alliance. “This action is vitally important to downstream communities and the Smith River as a stronghold for Pacific salmon species.”

 

“The Wild Rivers Coast and rivers like the Smith are legendary among anglers for their steelhead and salmon fisheries,” said Dean Finnerty, NW Regional Director, Angler’s Conservation Project, Trout Unlimited. “This region supports a robust sport fishing economy that is vitally important for many rural communities. Rep. Hoyle’s Smith River National Recreation Area Expansion Act is a sensible and timely way to honor the sporting heritage of this region and to conserve the cold, clean, fish-filled waters that are the hallmark of this part of America.”

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12 Comments
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Gary Whittaker
Guest
Gary Whittaker
6 months ago

The whole region is already protected! Huffman needs to work on more important issues facing the NorCal coast.
He’s just kicking sand.

Mr. Clark
Member
Mr. Clark
6 months ago
Reply to  Gary Whittaker

It would be nice to kick some oil sands and get Americans back to work.

Steelhead
Guest
Steelhead
6 months ago
Reply to  Gary Whittaker

Your wrong, That section is not protected. It is in Oregon and never was part of the Smith river national recreation area.

Gary Whittaker
Guest
Gary Whittaker
6 months ago
Reply to  Steelhead

Anymore protections and it’ll be illegal to look at it
Like I said, there’s more important issues to be solved by lawmakers.

Gary Whittaker
Guest
Gary Whittaker
6 months ago
Reply to  Steelhead

Start a go fund me to pay for it. Our country has wars and aid to pay for. Get on with the real work Huffman?

mindyourhead
Member
mindyourhead
6 months ago
Reply to  Gary Whittaker

This is the tiniest little drop in the bucket compared to the money that goes to wars and aid. Thank God the world has people that see the value in protecting natural treasures like this otherwise people like Gary would happily turn everything into a polluted dumping ground.

Gary Whittaker
Guest
Gary Whittaker
6 months ago
Reply to  mindyourhead

Never said it shouldn’t be protected. Just find a different funding source.

spamned
Guest
spamned
6 months ago
Reply to  Gary Whittaker

death cult

right here folks

Farce
Guest
Farce
6 months ago
Reply to  Gary Whittaker

I love the Smith River. I think protecting the north fork is important and long overdue. It’s the last major undammed river in CA and the fish are delicious. I think Huffman can do more than one thing at a time. I don’t think protecting our spectacular natural resources is a partisan issue. Many great environmental protections were done by Republicans. I am both a fiscal AND environmental conservative. Yes- Huffman has other very important things to do also but this shouldn’t slow him down….

Gary Whittaker
Guest
Gary Whittaker
6 months ago
Reply to  Farce

How much effort does Huffman use to sign a piece of paper? Good point, he should be able to walk and chew gum at the same time.

Mr. Clark
Member
Mr. Clark
6 months ago

Hey Jer, how bout getting Biden to open up the oil fields and the pipelines?
Lay off the gun control and tax hikes too.

old guy
Guest
old guy
6 months ago
Reply to  Mr. Clark

i don’t think he can hear you, try all capitals, with an exclamation point 😉