[Rep. Howard "Buck" McKeon, Dec. 11, 2014] —
Today I am honored to announce the passage of my bill, H.R. 5742, the Soledad Canyon Settlement Act.
This tremendous achievement is the result of more than two decades of tireless work to develop a practicable solution that would take the Soledad Canyon Mine out of commission and lift this burden off of the backs of my constituents.
Over the years I have engaged with civic leaders, residents of my district, environmental leaders, the County of Los Angeles, CEMEX, BLM, and the Department of Interior. In repeated efforts to bring all parties together to craft a deal that would be mutually beneficial, I have introduced eight bills on this issue, each of which took a different approach in dealing with the mine.
The tug and pull of all parties has influenced the legislative process, with each contributing ideas to further perfect a bill that would finally solve this vexing issue that affects the residents of my district.
In the 113th Congress, I have redoubled my efforts to identify an avenue through which I could finally bring this bill to fruition. The NDAA has never been the proper legislative vehicle to attach the Soledad Canyon Mine legislation to, and neither was today’s Omnibus spending bill.
This day has been a long time coming, and I could not be more grateful to everyone who has devoted their time and energy to get the Soledad Canyon Settlement Act over the finish line. I would like to extend a special thank you to Speaker John Boehner, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Chairman Doc Hastings for their steadfast support of my bill. They have been invaluable allies in this fight.
I would also like to thank Congressman Brad Sherman and Senator Barbara Boxer for reaching across the aisle to achieve such a resounding and bipartisan victory.
I am looking forward to Senator Boxer leading the charge for swift Senate consideration and passage.
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