By Miriam Raftery
Photo: Cleveland National Forest, courtesy National Forest Service
April 6, 2015 (San Diego’s East County)—The Republican-controlled House and Senate have passed measures that would allow the sale or outright giveaway of most public lands –including national forests, federal wildernesses and wildlife preserves and Bureau of Land Management properties. Only Republicans voted for the language slipped into a non-binding budget resolution—which passed without a single Democratic vote.
The shocking news is revealed in a New York Times editorial by Will Rogers, president of the Trust for Public Lands, titled “Our Land, Up for Grabs.”
While it’s unlikely that President Barack Obama would support such an extreme measure, if a Republican president is elected in 2016 and Republicans maintains control of both houses of Congress, losing our cherished public lands such could be a very real possibility.
Here in San Diego County alone, that could mean the demise of: Cleveland National Forest, Otay Mountain Wildnerness, Hauser Wilderness, Pine Creek , Carrizo Gorge, Sawtooth Mountains Wilderness , Agua Tibia Wilderness, San Diego National Wildlife Refuge, San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge , Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge, McCain Valley National Recreation Area and more.