For the third time, Schiff introduces Rim of the Valley bill to protect land in Simi Hills, Verdugo, Santa Susana and San Gabriel mountains

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Maybe the third time is the charm.

That could be the thinking behind U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Burbank, introducing for the third time a land preservation bill which would add more than 191,000 acres — called the Rim of the Valley Unit — to the already existing Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.

On Wednesday, Schiff joined with Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris, both Democrats, in re-introducing into the 116th Congress the bill which failed adoption in the two previous attempts, in 2016 and again in 2017. During the latter effort, the National Park Service came out against the bill because of the financial strain the additional acreage would cause.

The Rim of the Valley Unit would more than double the size of the 153,000-acre Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area by adding almost 200,000 acres of wildlands, parks and historical sites.

The addition includes a narrow stretch along the urban shores of the Los Angeles River and its tributary, the Arroyo Seco in west Pasadena; the Verdugo Mountains above Glendale; the San Rafael Hills, a portion of Chantry Flat hiking area above Sierra Madre, Millard Canyon, the Simi Hills and the Santa Susana and Conejo mountains in Ventura County.

Besides untouched wildlands and city parks surrounding the dense San Fernando Valley and parts of the San Gabriel Valley, the addition’s boundary dips southeast to envelop Griffith Park, Hansen Dam Recreation Area, Sepulveda Basin, Ernest Debs Regional Park, El Pueblo De Los Angeles Historical Monument, Eaton Canyon in east Pasadena, the Rose Bowl, Hahamongna Watershed Park and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Map of the “Rim of the Valley Unit,” as proposed in legislation by Rep. Adam Schiff and Sen. Dianne Feinstein. Purple areas represent land that would be added to the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. (map courtesy of the U.S. National Park Service).

Under the bill, the National Park Service would be responsible for managing additional lands, adding their expertise to trail building, wildlife studies, recreation planning and protection of natural resources, including a cohort of mountain lions that are dying from being hit by cars on the 101 Freeway or rodenticide poisoning.

“As more of this area is developed and open space diminishes, the wildlife it supports is increasingly at risk,” Schiff said in a prepared statement. “Congress must preserve the Rim of the Valley for the next generations, but we must act quickly on a bipartisan basis or this …read more

Source:: Dailynews – News

      

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