Rep. Huffman Introduces Bill on Sustainable Management of the Point Reyes National Seashore

August 30, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C. —Representative Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael) has introduced proposed legislation regarding management of the Point Reyes National Seashore and the historic working ranches and dairies that are part of the seashore’s unique historic, cultural, scenic and natural values.  Huffman’s bill clarifies Congress’ longstanding intent and makes good on former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar’s 2012 promise that existing sustainable ranching activities within the Seashore will continue and ranching families will receive the benefit of long-term leases. 

“This bill provides a measure of support for the continuation of sustainable ranches and dairies as part of the fabric of our spectacular Point Reyes National Seashore, without compromising any environmental standards and consistent with the current General Management Plan update process,” said Huffman.  “I’m grateful to have Rep. Rob Bishop (R-UT) as cosponsor of this bipartisan bill, and for the many stakeholders I have consulted with over several years to inform the careful, narrowly tailored provisions in this legislation.”

Huffman’s bill:

  • Clarifies that the term “agricultural property” used in amendments to the Point Reyes National Seashore enabling act also includes certain ranches in the northern portions of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area which have long been managed by Seashore personnel under Park Service policy;
  • Directs the Secretary of the Interior to manage agricultural properties consistent with Congress’ longstanding intent to maintain the Seashore’s historic working dairies and ranches;
  • Directs the Secretary to manage Tule Elk to ensure separation from working dairies and ranches on agricultural property to minimize conflicts;
  • Authorizes the Secretary to consider working with Indian Tribes as an option for managing Tule Elk herds and minimizing conflicts on agricultural property; and
  • Directs the Secretary to complete the park’s general management planning process, including National Environmental Policy Act review, and authorizes issuance of leases or special use permits of 20 years, consistent with the Act’s purposes.

Huffman’s bill does not impact the General Management Plan amendment process that is currently underway or alter the environmental review process for that General Management Plan.