Washington, D.C. – Congressman DeSaulnier’s first stand-alone bill as a Member of Congress was passed on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday.
The John Muir National Historic Site Expansion Act (H.R.1289) would add 44 acres of donated land to the Martinez historic site that celebrates the life and legacy of John Muir. This bipartisan legislation will improve access to the park and its scenic trails, including those on Mount Wanda, named for Muir’s eldest daughter.
The John Muir National Historic Site, which includes the home where he lived, covers 330 acres of Contra Costa County. The bill was passed unanimously and can now proceed to the Senate, where Senator Barbara Boxer has introduced companion legislation.
“I am proud to lead this bipartisan effort to create and preserve national park space for future generations to enjoy and to honor Contra Costa’s own John Muir. This historic site is the place where Muir, the father of the National Park system, championed the revolutionary idea that wild spaces should be set aside for all to enjoy. I look forward to seeing this bill passed by the Senate and signed into law,” said Congressman DeSaulnier.
“Our sincere thanks go out to Congressman DeSaulnier for such critical legislation. Muir often walked this land with his two daughters, to admire the coast live oak that grow there, as well as the annual wildflowers that punctuate its grassy hillsides. Expansion of the John Muir Historic Site will forever protect this beautiful property and allow future generations to share in the same delights as Muir’s daughters,” said Linus Eukel, Executive Director of the John Muir Land Trust.
“We are looking forward to this significant addition to John Muir National Historic Site, including expanded opportunities to protect these lands while providing opportunities to learn about these resources and the legacy of John Muir. This is particularly fitting as we enter into the Centennial of the National Park Service in 2016, and focus on reaching out to the next generation of park visitors, stewards and advocates this coming year. Our thanks to Congressman DeSaulnier and the John Muir Land Trust for making this expansion possible,” said Sue Fritzke, Acting Superintendent of the National Park Service.
This legislation was co-sponsored by 31 of Congressman DeSaulnier’ s colleagues from both sides of the aisle. Congressman George Miller, who previously represented California’s 11th District, has been a strong champion of this bill.