A newsletter covering regulatory reform efforts in Washington and across America, published by Then National Center for Public Policy Research, 300 Eye St, NE #3, Washington, D C 20002, 202/543/1286, Fax 202/543/4779, E-Mail ReliefReport@aol.com.
Issue #47 * October 22, 1996 * David A. Ridenour, Editor
On September 26, the U.S. House of Representatives voted down the American Land Sovereignty Protection Act (H.R. 3752), a bill designed to return to Congress and the American people power over U.S. land that has been ceded in recent years to the United Nations. Though the measure received support from close to 60% of House members, it failed because it required approval by two-thirds. Had it been approved by both Houses of Congress and signed into law by the President, the American Land Sovereignty Protection Act would have barred U.N. designation of any land on American soil as either "World Heritage Sites" or "Biosphere Reserves" without American public input and congressional approval. There are currently 20 World Heritage Sites and 47 Biosphere Reserves comprising more than 51 million acres on U.S. territory, including 68% of all National Parks, monuments and preserves. Such designations have frequently been used to impose new regulations on public lands - regulations formulated by international bureaucrats who are not accountable to the American public. President Clinton threatened to veto the bill and used his influence with Democrat Members of Congress to defeat it. "Land designations under the World Heritage and Biosphere Reserve programs have been created with virtually no congressional oversight and no congressional hearings, " said Representative Don Young (R-AK), the author of H.R. 3752. "The public and local governments are rarely consulted. This is wrong and this legislation would have corrected this problem." Perhaps most surprising about the vote, however, was the fact that so many Representatives from the California - a state that has one-seventh of all the U.S. World Heritage Sites and Biosphere Reserves - voted for international bureaucratic control of public lands in California over local control. Among those Californians voting against H.R. 3752 were: Vic Fazio, George Miller, Mathew Martinez, Lynn Woolsey and Bob Filner. Only one Democrat Member from California - Gary Condit - voted in favor of the measure. Contact the House Resources Committee at 202/225-2761.
The Clinton Administration would have the public believe that it reduced the cost and number of regulations while making great strides in improving the environment. The record suggests otherwise:
Item 1: The pace of Superfund cleanup has slowed under President Clinton. During the last year of the Bush Administration, cleanup construction was running at a pace of 88 per year. Under Clinton, such construction has averaged less than 65 per year (1993-95).
Item 2: Shortly after Albert Gore took office, a veranda made of old-growth redwood and Douglas fir was added to the Vice President's residence.
Item 3: The EPA's 1994 National Air Quality and Emissions Trends Report showed that carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, and lead levels increased during the first two years of the Clinton Administration, reversing a downward trend begun under the Reagan and Bush.
Item 4: Under President Clinton, the number of new regulations as measured by the Federal Register rose to their highest level since the Carter Administration. In 1994, the Federal Register was 64,914 compared to 44,812 in 1986.
Item 5: In March 1996, the Denver Water Department released an extra 96 million gallons of water - enough for 300 families per year - to improve the backdrop for a photo-op for Vice President Albert Gore in front of the South Platte River.
Item 6: Criminal penalties by the Environmental Protection Agency against polluters were down the first half of 1996, despite an 8.5% funding increase. Meanwhile, the EPA increased spending on "advisory committees" by over 100% (1993-96).
Never take credit for "environmental achievements" that occurred over your objections. You risk being labelled - and rightly so - a hypocrite.
EPA Watch reports that Representative George E. Brown (D-CA), the ranking minority member of the House Science Committee, has been seeking information about at least two organizations that have dared to challenge the scientific validity of global warming and ozone depletion theories before congressional committees. Dr. Frederick Seitz, chairman of the George C. Marshall Institute and Dr. S. Fred Singer, President of the Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP) recently received letters from Representative Brown requesting detailed information about the organizations, including a list of donors, detailed financial and accounting information, and descriptions of how the organizations' select their science advisors. Overall, Brown's questions appear to be designed more to uncover financial or tax code violations than to assess the scientific credibility of the groups. EPA Watch plans to ask Representative Brown's staff whether other organizations that have testified before the Science Committee have been asked similar questions or whether Drs. Seitz and Singer were singled out. Perhaps it should also ask if Representative Brown is going after the messengers because he can not refute their message. Contact Dr. Bonner Cohen of EPA Watch at 202/739-0179.
All Correspondence to the Relief Report should be directed to: The National Center for Public Policy Research * 300 Eye Street, NE Suite 3 * Washington, D C 20002 * Tel 202/543/1286 * Fax 202/543/4779 * E-mail RelifRprt @ aol.com (C) 1996, The National Center for Public Policy Research does not imply endorsement by The National Center for Public Policy Research. Permission to reproduce articles permitted if source is credited.
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