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Gianforte, Yellowstone Gateway Community Celebrate Progress, Recommit to Protect Paradise Valley Permanently

October 12, 2018
Press Release

Congressman Greg Gianforte met with Park County residents, members of the Yellowstone Gateway Business Coalition, and local leaders this week to recommit their efforts toward a permanent mineral withdrawal to protect Paradise Valley.

Earlier this week, U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke issued a 20-year administrative ban on new mining claims in the area.

“While the administrative action is a positive step, Montanans need a permanent, legislative solution,” said Gianforte. “I will continue working with the local community to protect the vital business and recreational interests of Paradise Valley and conserve the Yellowstone gateway.”

Gianforte introduced the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act, H.R. 4644, last year to permanently withdraw mineral rights on approximately 30,000 acres of public land in an area north of Yellowstone National Park. The permanent moratorium enjoys widespread support from the community.

Gianforte’s bill passed the House Natural Resources Committee in September.

U.S. Senator Steve Daines, a member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, supports the legislation and helped guide similar legislation out of that committee last week.

“We are glad Secretary Zinke listened to Montanans and did what he could to protect this area for the next two decades,” said Senator Daines. “Now with Congressman Gianforte’s leadership in the House, it’s time for Congress to step in and permanently protect Paradise Valley for generations to come. I was pleased to help advance the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act through the Senate Committee last week and will continue to push for its enactment.”

Both bills await action in their respective chambers.

Local leaders praised Gianforte for his efforts.

"I am thankful to Congressman Greg Gianforte for taking the time out of his busy schedule to meet with us and to help us plan our next steps to get this across the finish line, so we finally have certainty for our businesses, our children, and our way of life,” said Dr. Jeff Reed, owner of Reedfly Farm in Emigrant. “I’m looking forward to a huge celebration where it all began here at Chico Hot Springs when the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act is passed into law."

Background:

On September 21, 2018, Gianforte welcomed the U.S. Forest Service’s recommendation to provide an administrative withdrawal of administrative rights that came days after Gianforte’s letter to Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. Gianforte, though, reaffirmed he would “continue working to deliver a permanent legislative solution that protects Paradise Valley for generations to come.”

On September 17, 2018, Gianforte sent a letter (HERE) to Secretary Perdue urging the secretary to work with Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to “advance a long-term withdrawal while legislation to permanently withdraw this area proceeds through Congress.”

On June 21, 2018, the House Natural Resource Committee’s Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources conducted a hearing on Gianforte’s Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act.

On March 8, 2018, Gianforte sent a letter (HERE) to leaders of the House Appropriations Committee requesting they include his Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act in a larger appropriations bill.

On December 14, 2017, Gianforte introduced the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act, H.R. 4644, to withdraw mineral rights and ban mining operations on 30,000 acres of public land in an area north of Yellowstone National Park.

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