H.R. 944: To eliminate an unused lighthouse reservation, provide management consistency by incorporating the rocks and small islands along the coast of Orange County, California, into the California Coastal National Monument managed by the Bureau of Land Management

H.R. 944

To eliminate an unused lighthouse reservation, provide management consistency by incorporating the rocks and small islands along the coast of Orange County, California, into the California Coastal National Monument managed by the Bureau of Land Management

Date
December 6, 2011 (112th Congress, 1st Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

On Tuesday, December 6, 2011, the House is scheduled to consider H.R. 944 under a suspension of the rules requiring a two-thirds majority vote for approval.  H.R. 944 was introduced by Rep. John Campbell (R-CA) on March 8, 2011, and was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources, which reported the bill on June 15, 2011, by unanimous consent.

Bill Summary

H.R. 944 would add a number of small islands and rocks that are currently reserved for the construction of lighthouses off the California coast to the California Coastal National Monument.

Background

In 1906, the Antiquities Act was signed into law, authorizing presidents to create national monuments on federal land that contain historic landmarks.  There are over 100 different units of the National Monument System around the country, which are managed predominantly by the NPS, but in some cases BLM, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), or the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) manage the land.  Land designated as a national monument is subject to restricted land usage. 

According to House Report 112-165, H.R. 944 is intended to correct a situation in which two public laws from the 1930's are inadvertently preventing certain rocks, pinnacles, reefs, small islands and lighthouses off the coast of Orange County from being included in the California Coastal National Monument (Monument).

President Bill Clinton, under the authority of Section 2 of the Antiquities Act of 1906, created the California Coastal National Monument on January 11, 2000. The Monument is protected as part of the National Landscape Conservation System and managed by the Bureau of Land Management. The Monument spans the entire 1,100 miles of the California coast between Mexico and Oregon, and extends 12 nautical miles from the shoreline. When created, the Monument only included “unreserved and unappropriated” rocks and islands. Since the areas covered by this bill were reserved for lighthouses that were never built, they were not designated as part of the Monument. This legislation will therefore provide consistency in the management of these geologic features under the umbrella of the National Landscape Conservation System.

Cost

According to CBO, “H.R. 944 would have no significant effect on the federal budget.”