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Parkland battle in Senate – Some oppose snowmobile ban

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Western senators are trying to block the Clinton administration’s expansion of national park lands, the Associated Press reported July 18.

Senate Majority Whip Don Nickles. R-Okla., has introduced a proposal that would block Clinton from creating any additional national monuments. Several Republican senators from politically moderate Northeastern states are expected to reject the proposal.

Many senators from Western states, however, oppose Clinton’s use of a 1906 law to add nearly 2 million acres this year to the federal lands protected as national monuments. The lands are nearly all in Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon and Washington.

Senator Craig Thomas, R-Wyo., is proposing to stop a National Park Service ban on snowmobiling in nearly all national parks. The ban, issued last April, is aimed at reducing noise and environmental damage. It is opposed by the recreation industry.

Both proposals were offered as amendments to a $15.5 billion finance bill for the Interior Department and federal cultural programs.

For full story, go to America Online.

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