Additional Threats from the 119th Congress
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Bill NameBill NumberDescription/why is it a threat?SponsorsMovement
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State National Forest Management ActH.R. 232Would require the Forest Service to convey to a state up to 2 million acres of “eligible” portions of forest service lands that it elects to acquire through state legislation. Those lands would be administered and managed primarily for timber production. Young (AK)Referred to HNR Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources 2/10/17
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Local Enforcement for Local Lands ActH.R. 622An absurd attempt by Rep. Chaffetz to terminate all Forest Service and BLM law enforcement. Declares that, by September 30, 2017, USDA and BLM shall terminate all of their Law Enforcement and Investigations officers and stop using those employees to perform law enforcement functions on federal lands. Those responsibilities would be handed over to local law enforcement.Chaffetz (UT - now retired), Stewart (UT - who became the new sponsor on 7/11/17), Love (UT), LaMalfa (CA), Amodei (NV), McClintock (CA), Gosar (AZ)Take action on this bill NOW: http://bit.ly/2wGP9Eo

Referred to HNR Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry 2/13/17
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Emergency Forest Restoration ActH.R. 865Would amend the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to allow the Department of the Interior and USFS to engage in "forest management activities" (i.e., clear-cutting and timber sales) on federal lands with virtually no environmental review or public input so long as the agency says the primary purpose of that activity is to address an insect or disease infestation that has been declared an emergency by the state governor. This bill ignores the science behind the cause and impacts of clear-cutting on forest fires -- that it does not help reduce or prevent forest fires. It also fails to do anything to actually help prevent or reduce forest fires, which would be to increase funding to the agencies so that they can conduct controlled burns and thinning.Sponsor: McClintock (CA)
Co-sponsors: Knight (CA), Denham (CA), Nunes (CA), Labrador (ID), Westerman (AR), LaMalfa (CA), McCarthy (CA), Newhouse (WA), Valadao (CA), Stewart (UT), Gosar (AZ), Cook (CA)
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Small Tracts Conveyance ActH.R. 1106Would require BLM and the Forest Service to select eligible federal lands parcels for conveyance: (1) in response to a request by an adjacent landholder or (2) upon the recommendation of the BLM District Office or NFS unit that exercises administration over such parcel. This bill would also require BLM and the FS to give notice to the adjacent landowners that they had this right. A conveyed eligible parcel would not be allowed to exceed 160 acres unless the BLM or the Forest Service approves a request for additional acreage. An adjacent landholder can only acquire one eligible parcel per year, but that is also subject to an exception.Amodei (NV)Referred to HNR Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry 3/10/17
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MAST ActH.R. 1489Would amend the Antiquities Act of 1906 to require the President, before a national monument can be designated on public land, to obtain congressional approval and certify compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

Would bar the President from declaring any area in the “exclusive economic zone” to be a national marine monument unless:

- Such a declaration is specifically authorized by an Act of Congress;
- The President has submitted a proposal to make the declaration to the governor of each state or territory located within 200 nautical miles of that area;
- Each governor submits to the President a notice that the legislature of that state or territory has approved the proposal; and
- The declaration is substantially the same as the proposal.

Would prohibit the Department of the Interior or the Department of Commerce, with respect to any area of the exclusive economic zone that is designated as a national monument, from implementing any restrictions on the public use of such a national monument until the expiration of an “appropriate” review period providing for public input and congressional approval.
Young (AK)Referred to HNR Subcommittee on Water, Power and Oceans 3/20/17
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Public Input for National Monuments ActH.R. 2074No official text available as of 9/22/17.

Would require compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) as a condition of designation of national monuments.
Walden (OR)Referred to HNR Subcommittee on Federal Lands 4/24/17
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Acre In, Acre Out ActH.R. 2167Gives a new requirement for any acquisition of land by DOI or USDA that would result in a net increase of total land acreage that are under the jurisdiction of NPS, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the BLM or Forest Service.  The department concerned must offer for sale an equal number of acres of federal land that is under the same jurisdictional status.Morgan (VA),  LaMalfa (CA), Gosar (AZ), Garrett (VA)Referred to Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry 5/4/17
Referred to Subcommittee on Federal Lands 5/2/17
Introduced and referred to House Committees on Natural Resources and on Agriculture 4/26/17
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National Monument Designation Transparency and Accountability ActH.R. 2284(Senate version S.132)

Would require congressional and State approval of national monuments and compliance with NEPA.

Would prohibit DOI from implementing restrictions on the public use of a national monument until the expiration of an “appropriate” review period providing for public input and Congressional approval.
Labrador (ID), Pearce (NM), Hice (GA), LaMalfa (CA)Referred to HNR Subcommittee on Federal Lands 5/11/17
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Desert Community Lands ActH.R. 2365Would transfer 4,630 acres of federal lands (surface estate) to Apple Valley to establish an OHV park. Land is located east of I-15, between Stoddard Valley OHV area and a railroad.

Would also transfer federal lands (surface estate - acreage not given in the bill) to Twentynine Palms (very small parcel south of 62 and west of Pinto Mountains DWMA/ACEC), Barstow (adjacent to northern boundary of Stoddard Valley OHV area), and Victorville (relatively large parcel that would include Northern Lucerne Wildlife Linkage and the Mojave Monkeyflower ACEC), with no requirements about what the land is to be used for.
Cook (CA)Schedule to be heard before the House Federal Lands subcommittee 05/17/18
Referred to Subcommittee on Federal Lands 5/11/17
Referred to House Committee on Natural Resources 5/4/17
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Fostering Opportunities for Resources and Education Spending through Timber Sales (FORESTS) Act of 2017H.R. 2613Directs the Department of Agriculture to establish at least one Forest Active Management Area within each unit of the National Forest System designated for “sustainable” forest management for the production of national forest materials (trees, portions of trees, or forest products) and forest active management revenues (derived from the sale of such materials). The bill says its purpose is to provide a dependable source of: payments to states in which a national forest is situated of 25% of specified forest receipts, to be used for the benefit of public schools and public roads; and economic activity through sustainable forest management for each beneficiary county containing NFS land included within that Area. Forest active management revenues would be used pay: the 25% payments to states for payment to beneficiary counties for the benefit of public schools and public roads; and deposits into the Knutson-Vandenburg Fund and the salvage sale fund for projects on NFS land.McMorris Rodgers (WA)Referred to Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry 6/8/17
Referred to Subcommittee on Federal Lands 6/7/17
Introduced and referred to House Committees on Natural Resources and on Agriculture 5/23/17
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Planning for American Energy Act of 2017H.R. 2907Would amend the Mineral Leasing Act to require the Secretary of the Interior to develop and publish a quadrennial federal onshore energy production strategy to meet domestic energy needs. The Secretary would be required to include a domestic strategic production objective for development of energy resources on federal onshore lands. The bill would likely force DOI to increase all types of energy development on public lands.Tipton (CO)Placed on the Union Calendar 11/16/17
Approved by House Natural Resources Committee 11/8/17
Subcommittee hearings held 9/6/17
Referred to the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources 6/23/17
Referred to HNR Subcommittee 6/15/17
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Making Public Lands Public ActH.R. 2950Would require Department of the Interior and U.S. Department of Agriculture to use not less than, the grater of 3 percent or 10 million dollars of the amount appropriated to the Land and Water Conservation Fund each year on certain “priority public access projects”.  Those “priority” projects are required to either: maintain or increase public access to existing federal public land for hunting, fishing, or recreational shooting through acquisition of rights-of-way or acquisition of land (or any interest in land) through equal value land exchanges from willing owners; or enhance, maintain, or restore access on existing roads, trails, or rights-of-way.

The Land and Water Conservation Fund was established by Congress in 1964 to fulfill a bipartisan commitment to safeguard our natural areas, water resources and cultural heritage, and to provide recreation opportunities. It has been used by federal land management agencies to acquire lands and waters that are necessary to achieve the agencies’ natural, cultural, wildlife, and recreation management objectives.  While this bill does not technically change the overall objectives, it now places a required minimum amount of spending on “access” which could result in an increase in the number of roads/routes which in turn could lead to increased wildlife and habitat destruction, habitat isolation, and resource destruction.
Pearce (NM)Referred to Subcommittee on Federal Lands 6/29/17
Introduced and referred to House Committee on Natural Resources 6/20/17
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Transparency and Honesty in Energy Regulations Act of 2017H.R. 3117Senate version S.1512

Would prohibit the Secretary of Energy, the Administrator of the EPA, the Secretary of the Interior, and the Chair of CEQ from considering the social cost of carbon, the social cost of methane, or the social cost of nitrous oxide, in taking any action.

Would also require the EPA to report on the number of proposed and final rulemakings, guidance documents, and agency actions since January 2009 that use those social costs.
Jenkins (WV), Bucshon (IN), Sessions (TX), Conaway (TX), Latta (OH), Posey (FL), Rouzer (NC), Lucas (OK), Barton (TX), Stewart (UT), Smith (MO), Luetkemeyer (MO), Lamborn (CO), Hudson (NC), Harper (MS), Blackburn (TN), Johnson (OH), Perry (PA), Guthrie (KY), Long (MO), Westerman (AR), Barr (KY), Rothfus (PA), Young (AK), Grothman (WI), Burgess (TX), Rogers (KY), Pearce (NM), Aderholt (AL), Palmer (AL), Cheney (WY), Byrne (AL), Abraham (LA), Johnson (LA), Smith (TX), Ratcliffe (TX), Cramer (ND), Mooney (WV), Olson (TX), Gosar (AZ), Cole (OK), Bishop (UT), Griffith (VA), Flores (TX), LaHood (IL), Womack (AR), Mullin (OK), McKinley (WV), Culberson (TX)Amended by Natural Resources Committee 11/02/18
Approved by House Natural Resources Committee (18-15) 11/30/17
Subcommittee hearings held 7/27/17
Referred to Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources 7/17/17
Referred to Subcommittee on Environment 6/30/17
Referred to Committee on Energy and Commerce and Committee on Natural Resources 6/29/17
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Endangered Species Litigation Reasonableness Act H.R. 3131Modifies the ESA in an attempt to make it harder for litigants to have the court award them their court expenses. The current language says, “The court, in issuing any final order…may award costs of litigation (including reasonable attorney and expert witness fees) to any party, whenever the court determines such award is appropriate.” Would modify “any party” and replace it with “any prevailing party.” This change could save the federal government money but would likely have the effect of reducing the number of people/organizations that decided to file suit under the ESA due to the uncertainty of getting attorney fees and expert witness fees.Huizenga (MI), LaMalfa (CA), Pearce (NM), Thompson (PA), Jones (NC), Tipton (CO), Gosar (AZ), Luetkemeyer (MO), Cole (OK), Cramer (ND)Placed on the Union Calendar, Calendar No. 424
Committee on Judiciary discharged 2/15/18
Approved by House Natural Resources Commitee (22-16) 10/4/17
Referred to the Committee on Natural Resources and the Committee on the Judiciary 6/29/17
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HEARD ActH.R. 3333Authorizes DOI and USDA to dispose of federal lands under their respective jurisdictions by offering them for sale or exchange to units of local government.

The nature of the acquisition and disposal authorities of these federal agencies varies. In general, the acquisition authorities are designed to allow the agencies to bring into federal ownership lands that many contend could benefit from federal management. Disposal authorities generally are designed to allow agencies to convey land that is no longer needed for a federal purpose or that might be chiefly valuable for another purpose. Some of the authorities specify particular circumstances where they can be used, such as the conveyance of FS land for educational purposes. As such, passage of this bill would likely increase the occurrences of the agencies disposing of federal lands to local governments.

Gross proceeds of the sales would go to:

1. 15% to the state where the sale takes place to be used to supplement education and state agricultural and natural resource agencies;
2. 15% to land grant universities in the state;
3. 10% to one or more counties within the boundaries of the land;
4. 10% to be deposited in a special account to be created in the Treasury which may be used for the acquisition of recreational beneficial lands and interests (providing an opportunity for hunting, recreational fishing, recreational shooting, recreational off-highway vehicles, or other recreational purposes, or to “achieve better management of public lands through consolidation of federal ownership”); and
5. 50% to the General Fund of the Treasury.
Gosar (AZ), Amodei (NV), Franks (AZ), Schweikert (AZ), Sessions (TX), Young (AK)Referred to Subcommittees on Conservation and Forestry and Federal Lands 8/8/17
Referred to the Committee on Natural Resources and the Committee on Agriculture 7/20/17
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Endangered Species Transparency and Reasonableness ActH.R. 3608Requires DOI to post on the Internet varies types of data related to determinations that species are endangered species or threatened species.

Hidden in the last section (Section 5) is language that would modify the ESA in an attempt to make it harder for litigants to have the court award them their court expenses. The current language says, “The court, in issuing any final order … may award costs of litigation (including reasonable attorney and expert witness fees) to any party, whenever the court determines such award is appropriate. The bill would replace “any party” with “any prevailing party”. This change could save the federal government money but would likely have the effect of reducing the number of people/organizations who file suit under the ESA due to the uncertainty of getting an award of their attorney fees and expert witness fees.
McClintock (CA), Huizenga (MI), LaMalfa (CA), Jones (NC), Gianforte (MT), Tipton (CO), Banks (IN), Gohmert (TX), Estes (KS), Luetkemeyer (MO), Marshall (KS), Mullin (OK), Pearce (NM), Stewart (UT), Norman (SC), Jenkins (KS), Biggs (AZ), Perry (PA), Rokita (IN), Mooney (WV), Thompson (PA), Gonzalez-Colon (PR), Hunter (CA)Placed on the Union Calendar, Calendar No. 815 11/27/18
Approved by the Committee on Natural Resources (19 Yeas - 12 Nays) 9/26/18
Introduced and referred to Committee on Natural Resources 7/28/17
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Restoring Access to Public Lands ActH.R. 6007Would release (invalidate) 13 existing Wilderness Study Areas, totaling approximately 170,000 acres, including the following 11 Wilderness Study Areas in California: Yola Boly, Timbered Crater, Pit River Canyon, Tule Mountain, South Warner Contiguous, Bitterbrush, Buffalo Hills, Twin Peaks, Dry Valley Rim, Skedaddle, and Tunnison Mountain. If this bill were to pass, these areas would no longer be managed as wilderness, which is the highest level of protection for public lands. Instead, they would be managed according to the BLM Resource Management Plans that are in place for those areas.Sponsor: LaMalfa (CA)
Co-sponsor: McClintock (CA)
Referred to Subcommitee on Federal Lands 6/8/18
Introduced and referred to Committee on Natural Resources 6/5/18
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WHOLE Act of 2018H.R. 6346Would amend the Endangered Species Act to revise the process by which the Department of the Interior (DOI) reviews its actions in determining whether they would likely jeopardize the continued existence of an endangered or threatened species or result in the destruction or adverse modification of the critical habitat of the species. Requires DOI to consider the offsetting effects of protection or conservation measures that are already in place, or proposed to be implemented as part of a DOI action, in making this determination.Sponsor: Johnson (LA)Placed on the Union Calendar, Calendar No. 817 11/27/18
Approved by Natural Resources Committee 9/27/18 (Yeas 20 - 11 Nays)
Introduced and referred to Committee on Natural Resources 7/12/18
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LAMP Act of 2018H.R. 6364Another attempt to take away the public’s opportunity to voice opinions or concerns about what takes places on federal public lands managed by the Department of Interior (DOI). Would amend the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in several ways, including providing an exemption from any environmental review or public input (which is currently required by the National Environmental Policy Act), with regard to cooperative management agreements for the management of areas established for the conservation of endangered or threatened species. Under current law, these agreements are between states and the Department of the Interior (DOI). This bill would allow DOI to also enter into these agreements with:

1) local governments, Indian tribes, or nonfederal persons; and 2) agreements to manage areas established for the conservation of species that are candidates for listing.

This could allow unqualified people or entities (and possibly those indifferent or hostile to listed species) entering into these cooperative management agreements with DOI.
Sponsor: Young (AK)
Co-sponsors: Gosar (AZ), Cramer (ND), Biggs (AZ), Bishop (UT), Duncan (SC), Meadows (NC), Norman (SC), Emmer (MN), Luetkemeyer (MO), Marshall (KS), Noem (SD), Stewart (UT), Banks (IN), Pearce (NM), McClintock (CA), Gohmert (TX), Newhouse (WA), Estes (KS), Abraham (LA), Thompson (PA), Smith (TX), Gianforte (MT), Rokita (IN), Mooney (WV), Guthrie (KY), Gonzalez-Colon (PR), Hunter (CA)
Introduced and referred to Committee on Natural Resources 7/12/18
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American Border ActH.R. 6415Would prohibit the Department of Interior and U.S. Department of Agriculture from impeding, prohibiting, or restricting the activities of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (including use of motorized vehicles) on federal public lands. Customs and Border Protection would be allowed to carry out all of their activities without having to comply with any of the following laws, and many more: Wilderness Act, Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, Antiquities Act, National Environmental Policy Act, Federal Land Policy and Management Act, Archaeological Resources Protection Act and Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, Migratory Bird Treaty Act, Endangered Species Act, Clean Air Act, and Safe Drinking Water Act.Sponsor: Ferguson (GA)Referred to various subcommittees, including Subcommittee on Federal Lands 7/19/18-8/01/18 and 9/19/18
Introduced and referred to the Committee on Homeland Security, and in addition to the Committees on the Judiciary, Transportation and Infrastructure, Oversight and Government Reform, Foreign Affairs, Agriculture, Armed Services, Natural Resources, the Budget, and Ways and Means 07/18/18
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Combustion Avoidance along Rural Roads (CARR) ActH.R. 7042Another attempt to chip away at the environmental review and public participation that is provided by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the protections of the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The bill would cover wildfire mitigation efforts that are undertaken within 500 feet of any permanent or temporary road. These activities, including forest thinning, hazardous fuel reduction, prescribed burning and vegetation management, would be exempt from NEPA and ESA requirements.Sponsor: LaMalfa (CA)
Introduced and referred to the Natural Resources and Agriculture Committees 10/05/18
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Improved National Monument Designation Process ActS.33Before a national monument could be designated, the President would have to obtain congressional approval, certify compliance with NEPA and receive notice from the governor of the state in which the monument is to be located, that the state legislature has enacted legislation approving its designation.Sponsor: Murkowski (AK)
Co-sponsors: Sullivan, Dan [R-AK], Daines, Steve [R-MT], Hatch, Orrin G. [R-UT], Heller, Dean [R-NV], Flake, Jeff [R-AZ], Lee, Mike [R-UT], McCain, John [R-AZ], Risch, James E. [R-ID], Grassley, Chuck [R-IA], Tillis, Thom [R-NC], McConnell, Mitch [R-KY], Blunt, Roy [R-MO], Inhofe, James M. [R-OK], Johnson, Ron [R-WI], Cruz, Ted [R-TX], Capito, Shelley Moore [R-WV], Wicker, Roger F. [R-MS], Sessions, Jeff [R-AL], Rubio, Marco [R-FL], Cassidy, Bill [R-LA], Crapo, Mike [R-ID], Roberts, Pat [R-KS], Cochran, Thad [R-MS], Rounds, Mike [R-SD], Barrasso, John [R-WY], Lankford, James [R-OK], Fischer, Deb [R-NE]
Referred to Committee on Energy and Natural Resources 1/5/17
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National Monument Designation Transparency and Accountability ActS.132Would require the President, before a national monument can be designated, to obtain congressional approval, certify compliance with NEPA, and determine that the state in which the monument is to be located has enacted legislation approving its designation.Crapo (ID), Lee (UT), Risch (ID), Rubio (FL), Hatch (UT), Inhofe (OK), Enzi (WY)Referred to Committee on Energy and Natural Resources 1/12/17
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Transparency and Honesty in Energy Regulations Act of 2017S.1512Senate version of HR 3117Lankford (OK), Capito (WV), Blunt (MO), Barrasso (WY), Inhofe (OK), Cornyn (TX), Cotton (AR)Referred to Committee on Environment and Public Works 6/29/17
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Forest Management Improvement ActS.1731Would exempt several types of national forest logging projects (up to 10,000 acres in size) from the public involvement and environmental analysis requirements of NEPA.

Would create five new legislative Categorical Exclusions (CEs) from NEPA. [Using a categorical exclusion means that the activities would be done without considering their impacts on the area’s water quality, wildlife, or recreational resources.]

Would exempt the Forest Service from analyzing the cumulative effects of logging projects that are categorically excluded from NEPA. This means that the agency could undertake multiple 10,000-acre logging projects in the same vicinity without considering their combined impacts on the area’s water quality, wildlife, and recreational resources.

For any Forest Service management project or activity that is not categorically excluded from NEPA, the bill would eliminate NEPA’s requirement to consider a reasonable range of alternatives. For major federal actions requiring an environmental impact statement (EIS), the bill would only require the Forest Service to analyze the agency’s proposal and the alternative of no action. For projects requiring an environmental assessment (EA), the Forest Service would only analyze the effects of its own proposal. Thus, the bill would preclude the consideration of management alternatives presented by concerned members of the public, other agencies, tribes, and local governments.

Would allow permanent road construction to be included in projects implemented by state forestry agencies on national forest lands through “Good Neighbor Authority.” Current law limits the use of such authority to construction of temporary roads.

Would re-purpose the stewardship contracting authority to benefit timber companies and counties and would severely restrict citizens’ ability to use the federal courts to challenge Forest Service management activities.
Thune (SD)Introduced and referred to Committee on Environment and Public Works 8/2/17
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Emergency Fuel Reduction ActS.1752Would allow a Categorical Exclusion (CE) from NEPA requirements for “authorized hazardous fuel projects” if the project:

1. Removes insect-infested or dead or dying trees, trees that pose a threat to public safety, or other hazardous fuels;
2. Threatens utility or communications infrastructure, municipal water supply systems, campgrounds, roadsides, schools, or “other infrastructure”;
3. Is conducted on federal land, that is not located in the wildland-urban interface but is within 1.5 miles of non-public lands, on which the Secretary determines that conditions (such as risk of wildfire, insect or disease epidemic, or presence of invasive species) pose a risk to the adjacent non-federal lands OR treats 10,000 acres or less of federal land, is at particular risk for wildfire, contains threatened and endangered species habitat or provides conservation benefits for a species that is being considered to be listed, state-listed species, and species of special concern.

[Using a categorical exclusion means that the activities would be done without considering their combined impacts on the area’s water quality, wildlife, or recreational resources.] This would not apply in any wilderness, national monument, or where removal of vegetation is prohibited by other federal law.
Heller (NV), Crapo (ID), Hatch (UT), Risch (ID), Flake (AZ)Introduced and referred to Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry 8/3/2017
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Human-Powered Travel in Wilderness ActS. 2877Would amend the Wilderness Act of 1964 to allow mountain bikes in wilderness (without ever using the words "mountain bikes").Sponsor: Lee (UT)Introduced and referred to Committee on Energy and Natural Resources 5/17/18
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Protect Utah's Rural Economy ActS. 3193An anti-Antiquities Act bill that would prohibit the President from establishing or enlarging a national monument in Utah withouth an Act of Congress and the Utah state legislature enacting legislation approving the proposed establishment or expansion. While the bill applies to federal public lands in Utah, only, it would set a bad precedent if it were passed.Sponsor: Lee (UT)Introduced and referred to Committee on Energy and Natural Resources 7/11/18
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