Rob Bishop

Rob Bishop


Bishop Selected Among HASC Members to Help Negotiate Final NDAA


WASHINGTON— Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01) was selected by House Armed Services Committee (HASC) Chairman Howard “Buck” McKeon (CA-25) as one of the key members tasked with helping to negotiate the annual National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015.

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is reviewed and voted on annually by the U.S. House of Representatives to provide funding for the U.S. Department of Defense’s budget. The bill provides funding for vital national defense capabilities, including our troops, essential infrastructure, weapons systems, the operations of the Pentagon, and cost of living pay increases for the military. Congressman Bishop and the HASC Members selected by the Chairman to negotiate the final NDAA with the U.S. Senate will work to ensure that this vital legislation is enacted so that our national defense capabilities may continue.

“The instability and unrest occurring today around the globe emphasize our need to have robust national defense systems in place throughout every branch of our military and our intelligence agencies. The U.S. Department of Defense has suffered draconian cuts over the past five years that have jeopardized the safety of our troops and the readiness of our forces. Ensuring that we address the needs of our troops and the Pentagon in the NDAA is a priority and I look forward to joining with fellow HASC Members to ensure that we get this bill passed in the Senate and signed into law,” said Congressman Bishop.

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House Passes Bill to Curb Federal Regulatory Overreach on Waters in States and Communities


WASHINGTON— Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01) today joined in support of the Waters of the United States Regulatory Overreach Protection Act [H.R. 5078], which would prohibit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers from expanding their regulatory authority to nearly every body of water in America, including ponds on farms, ditches, and watersheds.

For more than forty years, the regulation of water quality throughout the United States has been achieved through collaboration between states and the federal government. This partnership was established under the 1972 Clean Water Act (CWA) and limited the extent of the federal government’s oversight authority to “navigable waterways.” The defined responsibility of states and federal agencies resulted from the fact that not all waters need federal oversight and subsequently, that states should have the primary responsibility for the waters within their boundaries.

“The EPA is aggressively working to expand its regulatory and rulemaking authority. Decisions about water quality, use, and management are best made in coordination with officials at the local and state levels, and should not be decided solely by federal bureaucrats. The notion that water quality in our states would somehow be in jeopardy without the overreach of the EPA is bogus and unsubstantiated.  States, many of which are leaders on  research regarding water quality, are equally capable of ensuring that waters upstream and downstream have proper oversight,” said Rob Bishop.

The Supreme Court has twice reaffirmed the defined roles of states and federal agencies. The current presidential administration, however, has sought to “clarify the scope” of the federal government’s oversight jurisdiction under the CWA, which would ultimately expand its regulatory and rulemaking authority. The Waters of the United States Regulatory Overreach Protection Act would limit federal agencies from having the ability to unilaterally expand their power over waters in the United States.

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IN THE NEWS: In our opinion--Utah Public Lands Initiative a long shot worth pursuing — still


Deseret News editorial

Officially, it’s called the Utah Public Lands Initiative, but it’s more commonly referred to as “Bishop’s public lands initiative,” in deference to championing Rep. Rob Bishop. The Utah congressman also is chairman of the House Subcommittee on Public Lands and Environmental Regulation.

Now in its second year, the initiative continues to carry an oft-heard tag.

“Long shot.”

Built on the belief that conservation and economic development can co-exist in a locally driven effort, the public lands initiative proposes solutions for some 18 million acres in eastern and southeastern Utah, with possible wilderness designations reaching 2 million acres and creating well-defined areas for recreation, oil and gas development, mining interests, potash extraction and more.

It’s also built on the ideals of compromise and creativity — that trade-offs trump face-offs and that bargaining while giving up a little in a win-win situation for all sides is better than digging in with a defiant all-or-nothing attitude.

In theory, the initiative could and should work. In reality, it’s an uphill battle. A long shot.

Consider the expanse of the 18 million acres and the seemingly equally numerable stakeholders invested in the land. You’ve got county commissioners and cattlemen, politicians and petroleum corporations, fishermen and four-wheelers, landowners and lawmakers, Native American tribes and wilderness foundations, and developers and drillers. All are interested and all are invested in their own interests.

The challenge is getting the stakeholders all invested in the public lands initiative — and it’s no surprise the stakeholders often use that “long shot” label themselves.

There’s varying investment in the public lands initiative on the various local fronts. Emery County has had its give-and-take proposals finalized for quite some time now. Meanwhile, some counties — including those with less land involved in the initiative — are talking about stepping away from the negotiation table. It seems like for every step forward, there’s either a hesitancy to step ahead or the likelihood of stepping back.

Understandably, stakeholders who are communicating, considering and offering proposals of compromise are simultaneously continuing on with “business as usual” — individual efforts to further their objectives and protect their turfs. Because if the initiative doesn’t come through, they don’t want to be left alone or left behind. An example: while the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance has been negotiating in good faith with other stakeholders in initiative talks, they’re still pursuing support for the proposed America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act, a bill proposal to protect BLM-administered wilderness areas laden with red-rock features throughout the West.

Initiative versus act — negotiating with initiative stakeholders versus pushing for singular wilderness designation? Those aren’t conflicting efforts as much as they are being ready for either scenario — committed to the initiative if it goes through, but also being ready to move in a specified direction if it doesn’t.

Looming on the horizon is a proposed Greater Canyonlands National Monument, which would not only gobble up a tenth of the initiative’s 18 million acres but squelch many of the stakeholders' interests. In other words, the more expansive possibility of “likely land uses” suddenly becomes the much-narrower reality of “protected land use.”

The monument proposal flared up again last month when 14 U.S. senators — none from the state of Utah — wrote President Obama, encouraging him to use the Antiquities Act to establish the monument, similar to what President Clinton did in 1996 with the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

Most stakeholders don’t use the monument proposal as a threat when negotiating with each other nor as a ticking time bomb to prompt their own actions. But it’s like a nagging reminder of what could happen if all parties don’t come together to help the initiative become a reality.

As summer gives way to fall and with Bishop hopeful to introduce the initiative to Congress early next year, now’s a good time to have stakeholders check their progress. Are they committed to breaking new ground or retreating to the status quo? Are they willingly testing these new alliances in the initiative or turning back to protecting their own turf?

While the “locally driven” initiative relies heavily on the involvement of individual counties, might a cooperative gathering of county leaders to discuss efforts and successes help the individual efforts? Might the state offer assistance in a “big brother” role of counsel and encouragement for the counties?

And do negotiations (or the lack thereof) in similar current land-use/wilderness conflicts — such the RS 2477 road access lawsuits involving stakeholders such as the state of Utah, most of the state’s counties, SUWA and numerous landowners — serve as a foreshadow of what might and might not happen as the public lands initiative heads from the back stretch, around the final turn and toward the finish line?

That last phrase sounds like a horse-racing analogy — and rightfully so. Everyone’s excited when a long-shot racing horse overcomes big odds and wins. And with this long shot, the stakeholders and the public can be excited with win-win results.

Copyright 2014, Deseret News Publishing Company

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Bishop Announces August Town Hall Meetings


OGDEN, UT-- Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01) today announced that he will host town hall meetings in Davis, Uintah, Duchesne, Weber, Box Elder, and Cache Counties. The meetings will provide constituents with an opportunity to hear about current events and the latest policy initiatives in Congress and how they impact the State of Utah. Constituents will also have an opportunity to ask questions and share concerns or comments.

“I look forward to the town halls held in August each year. They provide an opportunity for communities in the First District to hear about the latest events back in Washington, but more importantly, they give me an opportunity to learn more about the thoughts and concerns from constituents. I take the feedback shared during town hall meetings back to Washington with me and it plays an important role in how I approach policy discussions and debates,” said Bishop.

Congressman Bishop hosts town hall meetings throughout the year as well as every August during the Congressional summer work period. Below is a schedule of the upcoming meetings:

Davis County
WHAT: Davis County Town Hall Meeting
WHERE: Layton City Council Chambers
437 N. Wasatch Drive
Layton, Utah
DATE:  Wednesday, August 13, 2014
TIME: 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Uintah County
WHAT: Uintah County Town Hall Meeting
WHERE: USU Vernal Campus
320 N. Aggie Blvd.
Vernal, Utah
DATE: Thursday, August 14, 2014
TIME: 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Duchesne County
WHAT: Duchesne County Town Hall Meeting with Governor Gary R. Herbert
WHERE: Crossroads Senior Center
50 East 200 South
Roosevelt, Utah
DATE: Thursday, August 14, 2014
TIME: 7:30p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Weber County
WHAT: Weber County Town Hall Meeting
WHERE: Shepherd Union Building, Ballroom B
Weber State University
DATE: Tuesday, August 19, 2014
TIME: 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Box Elder County
WHAT: Box Elder County Town Hall Meeting with Governor Gary R. Herbert
WHERE: USU Extension, Milton-Miller Building Commons
195 W. 1100 S.
Brigham City, Utah
DATE:  Tuesday, August 19, 2014
TIME: 8:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Cache County
WHAT: Cache County Town Hall Meeting
WHERE: Historic County Courthouse
199 N. Main Street
Logan, Utah
DATE: Thursday August 21, 2014
TIME: 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

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House Passes Historic Updates to Endangered Species Act


WASHINGTON— Today Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01), House Natural Resources Public Lands and Environmental Regulation Subcommittee Chairman, joined in supporting the passage of the 21st Century Endangered Species Transparency Act [H.R. 4315.]

The legislation makes updates and improvements to the Endangered Species Act (ESA), which has struggled to accomplish its core mission due to outdated policies. Since the bill’s creation in 1973, more than 1500 species have been listed and the current rate of recovery stands at just 2%. It has been 26 years since updates were made to ESA. Excessive litigation by special interest groups has been an albatross around the neck of ESA, and has prevented it from achieving the results for which it was intended. Today’s legislation seeks to address this challenge, improve transparency of the program, bring greater state involvement, and reduce the taxpayer-financed litigation.  

“The Endangered Species Act isn’t working. The ultimate goal is to ensure that threatened and endangered species are successfully recovered and that long-term management plans are put into place. This legislation puts us on a path to do that. Without updates we will maintain the status quo, which has had a success rate of just two percent. In every classroom in America, that counts as a failing grade. We have to do better,” said Congressman Bishop.

The following are key improvements to ESA included in H.R. 4315:

·         Data used by federal agencies to support an ESA listing will be made available to the public through the internet.


·         The federal government will disclose to affected states data used prior to an ESA listing decision.


·         The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will be required to track, report to Congress, and share online federal taxpayer funds as well as personnel hours required to respond to ESA related lawsuits.


·         Placement of reasonable caps on attorneys fees to make the ESA consistent with existing federal law. Through ESA-related litigation, attorneys are being awarded large sums that often include rates as much as $600 per hour. In most other areas of the federal government, attorneys’ fees are limited to $125 per hour in most circumstances.


Supporters of this legislation include:

·       American Logger’s Council

·       U.S. Chamber of Commerce

·       Family Farm Alliance

·       National Rural Electric Cooperatives Association

·       National Endangered Species Act Reform Coalition

·       National Association of Conservation Districts

·       National Association of Counties

·       Western Energy Alliance

·       American Farm Bureau Federation

·       Americans for Responsible Recreational Access

·       American Council of Snowmobile Associations

·       BlueRibbon Coalition, Inc.

·       Motorcycle Industry Council

·       National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council

·       Off-Road Business Association

·       Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association

·       Specialty Equipment Market Association

·       Specialty Vehicle Institute of America

·       The Public Lands Council

·       National Cattlemen’s Beef Association

·       Washington Farm Bureau

·       Oregon Farm Bureau

·       Idaho Farm Bureau

·       Colorado Farm Bureau

·       The Public Power Council

·       Northwest River Partners

·       Wyoming County Commissioners Association

·       Wyoming Stock Growers Association

Wyoming Association of Conservation Districts Read More

President Signs Hill Creek Cultural Preservation and Energy Development Act into Law


WASHINGTON— Today, President Barack Obama signed the Hill Creek Cultural Preservation and Energy Development Act [H.R. 356/ S. 27] into law. This legislation was authored by Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01) and Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT).  

The bill specifically facilitates the exchange of approximately 20,000 acres of state-held mineral rights within the Hill Creek Extension of the Ute Indian Reservation for mineral rights on approximately 20,000 acres of land located within the northern portion of the reservation. This new law protects cultural lands in the southern part of the reservation and provides new opportunities for energy development elsewhere.

“This legislative effort is an example of the successes that are possible through collaboration.  So much uncertainty exists with the way areas of our public lands are managed and used. Here we were able to take interests of different entities, the Ute Tribe and the State of Utah, and reach an agreement about an equitable exchange that protects sensitive cultural lands while also providing opportunities to generate revenue for public education. This bill is an important part of our ongoing efforts to successfully address the decades old challenges that have prevented us from reaching agreements about land use, management, and conservation. It is my hope that this is among many future successes on this front,” said congressman Bishop.

Congressman Jim Matheson (UT-04), Congressman Jason Chaffetz (UT-03), Congressman Chris Stewart (UT-02), and Senator Mike Lee (Utah) are original co-sponsors of the legislation.


Bishop Lauds Senate Passage of Hill Creek Cultural Preservation and Energy Development Act

Rep. Bishop’s Hill Creek Bill Passes House

Hatch and Bishop Introduce Legislation to Convey Federal Land to the State of Utah

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IN THE NEWS: Utah Republicans Bishop, Hatch draw rare praise from enviros for land-swap bill


by Scott Streater, E&E reporter

Utah Rep. Rob Bishop (R) has long butted heads with conservation leaders and the Obama administration over land-use policies that he says hamper domestic energy production and destroy jobs.

But Bishop and Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) drew praise from conservation groups yesterday, the day after the Senate approved legislation sponsored by Bishop and Hatch that would authorize the state of Utah to relinquish certain school trust or subsurface mineral lands in order to benefit the Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation.

The House approved the bill in May; President Obama is expected to sign the bill into law.

The "Hill Creek Cultural Preservation and Energy Development Act," H.R. 356, calls for the exchange of roughly 20,000 acres of Utah's mineral rights from ecologically and culturally sensitive lands in the Desolation Canyon region of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation for federal mineral rights in another, less environmentally sensitive part of the reservation.

Utah's School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration, or SITLA, has long wanted to swap state lands for mineral-rich tracts managed by the Bureau of Land Management, though the idea is controversial.

Bishop has been working for months with a large number of different stakeholders in the state, including conservation and local county leaders, on a number of public lands proposals that strive to balance energy development with other uses, including new wilderness designations (Greenwire, Oct. 22, 2013).

Environmentalists praised Bishop and Hatch for championing H.R. 356.

The Desolation Canyon area has long been a target of oil and gas development. BLM in 2012 approved a plan to drill as many as 1,300 natural gas wells in the next 15 years across more than 206,000 acres of mostly federal land. BLM's plan calls for using directional drilling techniques to stay away from sensitive areas, but critics say it will still harm the Desolation Canyon wilderness study area.

The Wilderness Society is part of a coalition of conservation groups that filed a federal lawsuit in Salt Lake City this year challenging the Interior Department's approval of the project (E&ENews PM, Jan. 22, 2013).

"This legislation will help protect one of the most ecologically critical and culturally sensitive lands in the country," Paul Spitler, director of wilderness campaigns at the Wilderness Society, said in a statement. "At the same time, it will increase revenue for the Utah schools and the tribe. It is a win for the environment, the tribe and the state.

"We applaud Congressman Bishop and Senator Hatch for their leadership and commitment in securing passage of this important bill," Spitler added.

The Bishop-Hatch bill was one of a slew of natural resources bills approved this week by the Senate, including measures that would increase the size of an Oregon national monument and create a national park in Maryland (E&E Daily, July 10).

Bishop said in a statement that he was happy the bill found favor with Democrats and Republicans alike.

"I am pleased that we are finally able to get this long-sought exchange to the President's desk. Today, that's not such an easy endeavor," he said in a statement. "This bill importantly takes into account the interests of both the Ute tribe and the State of Utah. It offers necessary protection to sensitive cultural lands while providing new opportunities to generate revenue for Utah's public education."

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Bishop Lauds Senate Passage of Hill Creek Cultural Preservation and Energy Development Act


WASHINGTON— The U.S. Senate today passed the Hill Creek Cultural Preservation and Energy Development Act [H.R. 356/ S. 27] originally introduced by Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01) and Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT).  The legislation facilitates the exchange of approximately 20,000 acres of state-held mineral rights within the Hill Creek Extension of the Ute Indian Reservation for mineral rights on approximately 20,000 acres of land located within the northern portion of the reservation. This exchange will ensure that cultural lands in the southern part of the reservation will be protected in perpetuity while, at the same time, providing new opportunities for energy development elsewhere. The legislation already passed in the U.S. House of Representatives on May 13, 2013 and will now head to the President’s desk to be signed into law.

“I am pleased that we are finally able to get this long-sought exchange to the President’s desk. Today, that’s not such an easy endeavor. This bill importantly takes into account the interests of both the Ute tribe and the State of Utah. It offers necessary protection to sensitive cultural lands while providing new opportunities to generate revenue for Utah’s public education,” said congressman Bishop.

Congressman Jim Matheson (UT-04), Congressman Jason Chaffetz (UT-03), Congressman Chris Stewart (UT-02), and Senator Mike Lee (Utah) are original co-sponsors of the legislation.


Rep. Bishop’s Hill Creek Bill Passes House

Hatch and Bishop Introduce Legislation to Convey Federal Land to the State of Utah


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Bishop Issues Statement in Response to Supreme Court Decision on Religious Liberty


WASHINGTON— Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01) issued the following statement in response to today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision declaring that certain U.S. employers cannot be required by the federal government to pay to cover contraceptives for their employees:

“Religious freedom is a fundamental constitutional right and I am very pleased by the Supreme Court’s decision to continue to protect that right.  The Obama Administration’s attempt to force employers to pay for things which they may oppose on religious or moral grounds was unacceptable and I’m glad that we have some resolution on this matter,” said Congressman Bishop.

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IN THE NEWS: In our opinion: Expanding Goblin Valley State Park deserves serious consideration (Deseret News)


Deseret News editorial

Published: Sat, June 28

Read online here

A proposal to expand Utah’s Goblin Valley State Park to include federal lands already heavily used for recreation is a sound and sensible idea that deserves serious consideration. Ideally, it would come to fruition as part of a “grand bargain” process underway to settle land-use disputes in seven Utah counties.

The framework for such a bargain is emerging in Congress behind the work of Utah Rep. Rob Bishop, who is cobbling together a coalition of diverse interests to find agreement on the management of millions of acres that have long been the subject of rancorous disagreement. The process contemplates a series of agreements for land swaps that would require buy-in from state, county and federal agencies, as well as from various environmental, recreational, commercial and energy development interests.

So far, Bishop has managed to keep the necessary stakeholders on board as the process develops, which in itself is an accomplishment worth heralding.

Though diverse in their agendas, the parties acknowledge the value of a coordinated and comprehensive approach to land-use designation. It would bypass legal wrangling that inevitably occurs when state or county land managers move to open land to commercial development over the protests of environmental groups. And it would preclude an act of executive fiat to create a national monument out of federal holdings, which some believe may be on the Obama administration’s agenda.

Bishop’s process involves the disposition of 18 million acres in the eastern part of the state, and the process would likely result in millions of acres coming under wilderness designation. It would finally offer certainty to the various interests competing in their advocacy for different land-use strategies, including industries involved in coal, oil, gas and potash extraction.

The recently announced proposal to expand the 3,500-acre Goblin Valley State Park by 132,000 acres should naturally fall under that process. The park would expand its boundaries into the popular San Rafael Swell, long under pressure from recreation use that has not been closely regulated as it would be under a parks designation. Federal land managers have indicated a favorable attitude toward Goblin Valley expansion.

That proposal and the larger efforts by Bishop are reminiscent of the process of negotiation and compromise that led to legislation in 2009 to forge a long-term land-use plan in Washington County. The process now underway in Washington takes that approach to a higher level.

It is precisely the right approach to bring finality to the disposition of millions of acres of valuable land and quell the long and fractious debate over how and by whom those lands are best managed.

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Contact Information

123 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-0453
Fax 202-225-5857

Committee Assignments

Armed Services

Natural Resources


A public school teacher turned public servant, Rob Bishop represents Utah’s First Congressional District in the U.S. Congress.

Rob Bishop is a life-long resident of the First District, with the exception of two years he spent in Germany while serving a mission for the LDS Church. He was born and raised in Kaysville, Utah, where he graduated from Davis High School with High Honors. He later graduated magna cum laude from the University of Utah with a degree in Political Science. He has been a resident of Brigham City since 1974.

Rob is married to Jeralynn Hansen, a former Miss Brigham City. They have five children: Shule, Jarom, Zenock, Maren, and Jashon.  They have six grandchildren- three boys and three girls.

Before coming to Congress, Rob was active in community theater, which is how he met his wife many years ago. As an avid baseball fan, Rob is a season ticket holder to the Salt Lake Bees and has coached in multiple leagues.

Rob is a devoted public servant. He has served his community in the State Legislature. During his sixteen years representing the Brigham City area, Rob distinguished himself as a leader. His last two years he was unanimously elected to serve as Speaker of the House. He also co-founded the Western States Coalition, a multi-state organization dedicated to protecting states’ rights and promoting Western interests and values.

Rob has served his political party for more than thirty years. Rob has worked at nearly every level of the Republican party, from precinct chair to member of the Republican National Committee, and has spent years working in every corner of this District. He has gone from Vice-Chair of the Davis County Teenage Republicans in 1968 to the advisor of the Utah Teenage Republicans in 1996. In 1997, he was elected Chairman of the Utah Republican Party. He served for two terms.

Rob has dedicated his life to teaching. He started teaching at Box Elder High School (BEHS) in Brigham City in 1974. From 1980 through 1985 he taught German and coached debate at Ben Lomond High School in Ogden, Utah, before returning to BEHS. Before retiring in December of 2002, he taught advanced placement courses in government and U.S. History, while serving as the Chair of the History Department at BEHS.

On January 7, 2003, Rob Bishop was sworn in as the new Congressman from Utah’s First Congressional District, replacing the retiring Representative Jim Hansen. For his first term, he was appointed to serve on his top three choices for House Committees – the Armed Services Committee, the Resources Committee, and the Science Committee – all three of which handle critical issues for Utah’s First District. In January 2005, Rob was sworn into a second term. He was subsequently appointed by the Speaker to serve on the powerful House Rules Committee, the legislative “gatekeeper” for all bills coming to the House floor.  During the 111th Congress, Rob was instrumental in founding the10th Amendment Task Force- a coalition of House Members committed to working toward disbursing power in Washington back to the people and states.

Rob is now in his sixth term in the House.  During the 113th Congress, Rob will serve on the House Armed Services Committee and the powerful House Rules Committee.  Rob will also continue serving on the Committee on Natural Resources where he is Chairman of the Public Lands and Environmental Regulation Subcommittee.

Serving With

Chris Stewart


Jason Chaffetz


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