H.R. 2636: Hudson River Valley Special Resource Study Act

113th Congress, 2013–2015. Text as of Jul 09, 2013 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO and Cato Institute Deepbills

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113th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 2636

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

July 9, 2013

(for herself, Mr. Sean Patrick Maloney of New York, Mr. Engel, and Mr. Tonko) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources

A BILL

To authorize the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resource study of the Hudson River Valley, New York.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Hudson River Valley Special Resource Study Act .

2.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of the Interior.

(2)

Study area

(A)

In general

The term study area means the portion of the Hudson River that flows from Rodgers Island at Fort Edward to the southernmost boundary of Westchester County, New York.

(B)

Inclusion

The term study area includes any relevant sites and landscapes within the counties in New York that abut the area described in subparagraph (A).

3.

Findings

Congress finds that—

(1)

the Hudson River Valley possesses nationally significant and unique cultural, historical, natural, recreational, and scenic resources;

(2)

the Hudson River Valley is home to a robust and growing tourism and recreation industry that is an important component of the regional economy;

(3)

throughout history, the Hudson River Valley has played a crucial role in the development of the United States, starting from the vibrant Native American communities that first inhabited the land, to the voyage of Henry Hudson up the river later named for Hudson in the vessel Half Moon in 1609 and later with the American Revolution, the debate on our Constitution, the first successful steamboat voyage by Robert Fulton in 1807, the Industrial Revolution, the establishment of the Erie Canal and growth of metropolitan New York, and the inception of the modern labor and environmental movements;

(4)

the Hudson River Valley gave birth to important movements in the art, architecture, and literature of the United States;

(5)

the Hudson River Valley encompasses a rich array of sensitive natural resources ranging from the Hudson River and the vast estuarine district of the Hudson River, to the wetlands, refuges, parks, forests, farmlands, preserves, cliffs, valleys, and wildlife of the Hudson River;

(6)

the depictions and descriptions of the renowned scenery and natural resources of the Hudson River Valley played a central role in the recognition of the value of the landscape and the development of the esthetic and environmental ideal of the United States;

(7)

a 1996 National Park Service study described the Hudson River Valley as the landscape that defined America; and

(8)

the Hudson River Valley has been the subject of multiple State and Federal inventories, studies, and plans that should greatly assist in the conduct of a National Park Service special resource study.

4.

Authorization of study

(a)

In general

As soon as funds are made available to carry out this section, the Secretary shall conduct a study of the study area to evaluate—

(1)

the national significance of the study area; and

(2)

the suitability and feasibility of designating the study area as a unit of the National Park System.

(b)

Study guidelines

In conducting the study under subsection (a), the Secretary shall—

(1)

use the criteria for the study of areas for potential inclusion in the National Park System included in section 8 of the National Park System General Authorities Act (16 U.S.C. 1a–5); and

(2)

closely examine models for units of the National Park System, in particular national river and recreation areas, and other landscape protection models, that—

(A)

encompass large areas of non-Federal land within designated boundaries;

(B)

promote increased heritage tourism and economic development;

(C)

foster public and private collaborative arrangements for achieving National Park Service objectives; and

(D)

protect and respect the rights of private land owners and municipalities.

5.

Report

Not later than 3 years after the date on which funds are first made available to conduct the study under section 4, the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Natural Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate a report on the findings, conclusions, and recommendations of the study.