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Rep. Young’s Bills Pass Committee By Unanimous Consent

Washington, D.C. - Two pieces of legislation authored by Alaskan Congressman Don Young passed out of the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources this morning.  Both H.R. 2864, the Hydrographic Services Improvement Act, and H.R. 2340, the Salmon Lake Land Selection Resolution Act passed by Unanimous Consent.

"These two bills are very important to Alaska for very different reasons," said Rep. Young. "The Bering Straits Native Corporation and the State of Alaska have conflicting selections to certain land in the Salmon Lake area that can be reasonably and equitably resolved with this legislation.  It is important that this agreement be completed, and its passing out of Committee today was a vital step.

"H.R. 2864 is an important piece of legislation not only for Alaska but for our country.  The United States is an Arctic nation because of Alaska and as activity in the Arctic picks up, Alaska will provide the gateway to our country's future.  It is incredibly important that we have abundant, accurate data to support safe navigation, claims to the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf, and management of resources.  I thank my good friend Chairman Rahall for his help in providing quick movement on both of these bills."

H.R. 2864, which would authorize much needed funds for hydrographic surveys and Continental Shelf mapping of the Arctic region, was introduced by Congressman Young in June, 2009.  This bill was part of a three-bill package introduced by Congressman Young in the 111th Congress, to address the effect changing Arctic conditions will have on commerce, resource development, tourism, and safe navigation of Arctic waters.  

The other two bills in this package are H.R. 2865 which will ensure safe, secure, and reliable marine shipping in the Arctic, and H.R. 4576, The Arctic Deep Water Sea Port Act.  H.R. 2865 was included in the Coast Guard Reauthorization bill (H.R. 3619) which passed the House last October.  H.R. 4576 passed the House on May 28, 2010 as part of the Defense Authorization bill (H.R. 5136).

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