H.R. 482, Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park Boundary Revision Act of 2015

H.R. 482

Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park Boundary Revision Act of 2015

Sponsor
Rep. Sanford D. Bishop Jr.

Date
March 22, 2016 (114th Congress, 2nd Session)

Staff Contact
Robert Goad

Floor Situation

On Tuesday, March 22, 2016, the House will consider H.R. 482, the Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park Boundary Revision Act, under suspension of the rules. H.R. 482 was introduced on January 22, 2015 by Rep. Sanford Bishop (D-GA) and was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources, which ordered the bill reported by unanimous consent on February 3, 2016.

Bill Summary

H.R. 482 re-designates the Ocmulgee National Monument in Georgia as the Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park and adjusts the boundary of the Historical Park to include approximately 2,100 new acres. In addition, the bill directs the Department of the Interior to conduct a special resource study of the Ocmulgee River corridor between the cities of Macon, Georgia and Hawkinsville, Georgia to determine: the national significance of the study area; the suitability and feasibility of adding lands in the study area to the National Park System; and the methods and means for the protection and interpretation of the study area by the National Park Service.

Background

Ocmulgee National Monument was originally authorized in 1934 to protect “lands commonly known as the Old Ocmulgee Fields, upon which certain Indian mounds of great historical importance are located.”[1] The monument’s enabling legislation authorized acquisition of land for Ocmulgee National Monument by public or private donation only. Although the enabling legislation stated that the Old Ocmulgee Fields were comprised of approximately two thousand acres, local residents living during the Great Depression could only raise enough funds to procure 678 acres by the time the monument was created.[2] Ocmulgee National Monument is currently 702 acres.

In January 2014, the National Park Service (NPS) published the findings of a boundary study and environmental assessment that examined the appropriateness of expanding the boundary of Ocmulgee National Monument. The NPS’s preferred alternative would authorize acquisition of land within the study area by willing donors and sellers up to approximately 2,100 acres, thus expanding the monument to approximately 2,800 acres.[3]

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[1] See Ocmulgee National Monument; establishment; acquisition of property
[2] Id.
[3] See U.S. Department of Interior: National Park Service, “Ocmulgee Old Fields Boundary Study & Environmental Assessment”

Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that implementing this legislation would have an insignificant cost; such spending would depend on the availability of appropriated funds. Because enacting H.R. 482 would not affect direct spending or revenues, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.

Additional Information

For questions or further information please contact Robert Goad with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 6-1831.