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Federal Bill To Study Making Lower L.A. River & San Gabriel River Part of Nat'l Park System Won't Include LB

We post amended bill text

(July 25, 2002) -- The lower L.A. river and lower San Gabriel river -- including areas in LB -- won't be part a federal study to consider whether they should be included in the National Park System.

Facing resistance from a number of sources, Congresswoman Hilda Solis (D., South San Gabriel Valley) has amended her bill (H.R. 2534) to exclude LB and other downriver areas. We post the amended bill text, below.

We also post below a July 9 letter to Cong. Solis sent by City Manager Taboada concerning the bill. Mr. Taboada's letter did not propose changes to the main substance of the bill (which at that time included lower LB portions of the L.A. river and San Gabriel river) but focused on including language giving LB and other area entities the right to have their written input included in the final federal report.

In pertinent part, City Manager Taboada wrote:

"The City of Long Beach has several outstanding concerns about the potential impacts of a national park overlaying the territory of the San Gabriel and Lower Los Angeles Rivers and a Mountains Conservancy (RMC). There are at least 21 agencies and 68 cities that will be impacted by a potential national park...We believe input from these interest parties should be officially included in the final draft of the [federal] study proposed by H.R. 2534...With these amendments, we can comfortably recommend to the Long Beach City Council a 'not opposed' position on the bill..."

No Councilmember agendized the proposed federal legislation for discussion, or committee action, or public input or voted Council action.

The original version of Solis' bill drew fire from some ELB residents near the San Gabriel River who feared it might lead to a federal takeover of their homes. Local Assemblywoman Sally Havice also charged it could undermine flood control efforts. Cong. Solis denied both charges.

The House Resources Committee voted on July 24 to approve the amended version of the Solis bill, sending it to the full House of Representatives where it could be voted upon in the coming months. In a written release after the Committee action, Cong. Solis said, "I am hopeful that my bill will be considered by the full House this year. Passage of this bill will allow the federal government to work closely with local stakeholders, local officials and the community to plan and provide a healthy environment."

The amended bill text follows:

Amended version of H.R. 2534 [begin text]


Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the following new text:


This Act may be cited as the ‘‘San Gabriel River Watersheds Study Act of 2002’’.

SEC. 2. AUTHORIZATION OF STUDY. (a) IN GENERAL. The Secretary of the Interior (hereinafter in this Act referred to as the ‘‘Secretary’’) shall conduct a special resource study of the following areas:

(1) The San Gabriel River and its tributaries north of and including the city of Santa Fe Springs.

(2) The San Gabriel Mountains within the territory of the San Gabriel and Lower Los Angeles Rivers and Mountains Conservancy (as defined in section 32603(c)(1)(C) of the State of California Public Resource Code).

(b) STUDY CONDUCT AND COMPLETION. Section 8(c) of Public Law 91-383 (16 U.S.C. 1a-5(c)) shall apply to the conduct and completion of the study required by this section.


In conducting the study authorized by this section, the Secretary shall consult with the San Gabriel and Lower Los Angeles Rivers and Mountains Conservancy and other appropriate Federal, State, and local governmental entities.

(d) CONSIDERATIONS. In conducting the study authorized by this section, the Secretary shall consider regional flood control and drainage needs and publicly owned infrastructure, including, but not limited to, wastewater treatment facilities.


Not later than 3 years after funds are made available for this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate and the Committee on Resources of the House of Representatives a report on the findings, conclusions, and recommendations of the study.

City Manager Taboada's letter to Cong. Solis can be viewed in pdf form at: July 9 letter re HR 2534 from City Manager Taboada to Cong. Solis.

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