Luján Applauds Passage of Public Lands Package
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.), the U.S. House Assistant Speaker, issued the following statement on the passage of the Natural Resources Management Act, a historic and bipartisan piece of legislation that expands public lands in New Mexico and extends conservation efforts through the United States.
“Today, we took a momentous step forward in the ongoing effort to safeguard our nation’s public lands and natural resources. Authorizing the Land and Water Conservation Fund will help ensure that New Mexicans have access to safe drinking water and our rivers, lakes, and streams are protected for us all,” said Luján. “I’m also incredibly proud to have helped shepherd the passage of the Cerros del Norte Conservation Act, which ensures that two of New Mexico’s most stunning landscapes are protected for future generations.”
The Natural Resources Management Act contains provisions that will safeguard New Mexico’s public lands, including:
- Permanent reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which has invested more than $312 million in New Mexico to protect public lands and open spaces and increase recreational opportunities across the state.
- The Cerros del Norte Conservation Act, which designates the Cerro del Yuta (Ute Mountain) and Rio San Antonio as Wilderness Areas within the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument.
- Reauthorization of the Rio Puerco Watershed Management Program which facilitates federal and state agencies, tribal communities, and local communities working together to reduce sediment, and control erosion on the Rio Puerco watershed.
- The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act establishes 10 permanent wilderness areas within the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.