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  • The Boxer-Reid Land Grab

    While Congress tackles all the responsibilities it should have already dealt with this year, Senator Harry Reid (D–NV) is hoping to sneak through legislation comprised of more than 100 bills that couldn’t pass on their own merit. This drastic expansion of federally owned lands has not even been introduced as a bill, but Reid hopes to jam it through before Christmas.

    The Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2010 is set to designate hundreds of thousands of acres of land under the control of the federal government. Yesterday, Michelle Malkin went on a media tour exposing this secret attempt. The piece of legislation has no official name because Reid has refused to introduce it or give any opportunity for public debate. Some of the highlights of the bill include:

    • $17 million for 30 acres to expand ownership of lands near Jimmy Carter’s boyhood home. That’s almost $600,000 an acre.
    • $500,000 for a study to see if the Hudson River Valley is of national significance.
    • $26 million for submerged and privately owned areas in the Virgin Islands—another 8,600 acres.
    • $10 million to create a 100-acre “buffer” expansion of Morristown National Historical Park and $100,000 for signs.
    • $16 million for 89,000 acres (or 139 square miles) of Valles Caldera National Preserve.

    Most of the other portions are coming to light only as they are discovered. This bill is product of closed-door negotiations between Reid and Senator Barbara Boxer (D–CA). No one has been given an opportunity to estimate the costs involved. No Senator has been given an opportunity to introduce amendments. While the preservation of designated historical and natural sites is a legitimate issue for Congress, Senate leadership has offered no opportunity for consideration or public input.

    Heritage has long been concerned about the inefficiency involved with relinquishing private land to the federal government. In addition, federal lands make border enforcement more difficult. Just last year, President Obama passed a 1,000-page, $8 billion massive government takeover of lands, restricting access to energy and suppressing economic development.

    Reid will not only battle those Republicans who would like to see an open debate; House Democrats would like their constitutional right to make changes. “I feel it is imperative that the House Natural Resources Committee and House leadership has equal say in what legislation is included in a final package,” Democrat Representative Raul Grijalva (D–AZ) told Politico. Boxer seems to care little about the input of House Members, worrying only about the 60 votes required in the Senate. By refusing to introduce this legislation days before its consideration and attempt at passage, the House will be pressured to rubber stamp anything it receives from the Senate.

    This is just another example of a Congress that is determined to ignore the American people. Congress should not forget the fact that it is directly accountable to the public. The recent election has proven that Americans will not stand for this type of leadership. It should serve as notice that hostile tactics and suppressed consideration was not what the Founding Fathers had in mind, nor is it what voters will accept.

    Posted in Energy [slideshow_deploy]

    29 Responses to The Boxer-Reid Land Grab

    1. Bobbie says:

      When, who and why are these closed-door negotiations allowed between any representatives of Americans? These people are insatiable.

    2. Carlton, Louisiana says:

      Taken together with Reid's other comment about..'earmarks are what we are suppose to do' this flies in the face of what is wrong with our power hungry Congressmen and Senators. None of the bills in the Omnibus bill would pass on its own merits, but the legislators have seen fit to force other bills onto an important piece of legislation that will commit more funds than is warranted by other means. The U.S. does not need more lands to control, monitor and turn over to the EPA and force new guidelines to tie up these properties indefinitely.

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    5. Elaine, Cedar Grove, says:

      Carlton you have it exactly correct.

      Setting aside – for the moment -the argument about the morality of our government claiming private property rights over huge portions of the states; this OMNIBUS is a big NO because WE CAN'T AFFORD IT!

    6. Mark, North Carolina says:

      The U.S. government already owns almost 1/3 of the land mass in our country, and they want more? While a large portion of our real estate is dedicated to very worthwhile purposes (national parks, conservation and wilderness areas, etc.), I fear that much is being grabbed for the sake of making sure the land is never used by us "greedy" capitalists.

      Just curious … does Harry Reid have land for sale in Nevada (of which, by the way, the U.S. already owns about 85%) and wants to make sure there is a "shovel-ready buyer" … namely the Federal Government?

    7. C Hyatt, Albuquerque says:

      •$16 million for 89,000 acres (or 139 square miles) of Valles Caldera National Preserve

      This equates to $180 per acre. I know land is worthless, but just exactly why would the state of New Mexico sell one of it's open space properties for this amount. Someone should be asking Tom Udall why we are considering this. The Federal Government needs to stop buying land and start doing what it was charged with in the first place. And buy the way, that land is being purchased with OUR TAX DOLLARS. Stop it. Enough is enough. Let me see if I can sum this up, we are buying our own land. Really. Something does not smell right here Tom.

    8. Lyn Ridenour, Wabash says:

      One of the things I am wondering about this land grab is who owns all the privately owned property in the Virgin Islands. Politicians…Barbara Boxer, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Charlie Rangel, Barney Frank????? And how can you own submerged land on an island?!?!?! Isn't there any why to find out who the owners are? Maybe Osama Bin Ladin, Hugo Chavez????

    9. Lloyd Scallan (New O says:

      What we all must recognize is that this "land grab" is just another ploy by Obama

      to not allow drilling on lands that contain enought crude oil and natural gas to support this nation independently for the next 100 years.

    10. Jim Dunlap, Yeringto says:

      The Founding Fathers of this country pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor to establish this form of government. How much of the latter could we find in WashingtonD.C. today? Probably not enough to fill a thimble.

      We need to not only vote the corrupt representatives out, but to imprison those who violate their oath of office. Some need to be publicly hung for their traitorous remarks and actions. In this manner we could weed out the corruptible candidates waiting in the wings for their turn at the spoils.

      By punishing harshly those in power for abuses we might enjoy honorable representation once again, and give to our children a better government than we ourselves received..

    11. R Holland, Chandler, says:

      We have the stupid voters of California and Nevada to thank for these idiots staying in the senate. Watch, next year Boxer and Harry will be putting forth bills to bail-out California.

    12. Pete, Houston Texas says:

      If they could not pass on their own merit then they should not be submitted for consideration at all. I am still at a loss as to why the people of Nevada put Harry Reid back into the Senate to continue his insanity. Why we let the lame duck congress do anything except emergency legislation is another issue to be resolved.

    13. David F. Murray, Bel says:

      Congress is not a sausage factory. Thanks to Heritage and others like them for shining lights in what have been dark places. Once lit, these lights will not go out. The cures will take a while, but each day will bring us closer to the transparency that we deserve, and want. The back rooms will now have windows and microphones.

    14. Dinah Garrison Fairb says:

      Call me naive, but until the last couple of years I had no idea this kind of thing could go on in our government. I have read a lot of English history from the 1500 and 1600s and this sounds an awful lot like the way they ran their country then. This is a disgrace.

    15. AWM -NW Indiana says:

      @R Holland- you are absolutely correct regards bailouts for California/Nevada….which is why we must remain vigilant- watching for legislation that would use a back-door methodology to send our tax dollars to repair the damage done to those states/economies in the name of progressive theory.

      I know that I will work against ANY elected official- without regard for party- who supports any such legislation!

    16. Matt, CO says:

      Thank you Heritage!!! You guys and gals rock! You have shed SOOO much light upon the dark halls of politics and national agenda. May God bless you all, and the U.S.A.

      If any of us have been ignorant to the true intent of people running for office, then we are guilty of putting these people in office who disgrace the very steps they walk up and seats they sit on to vote. I know I played the ignorant card for a long time.

      For the past three years I've been awakening to the stench of ignorance and where it has landed us.

      I agree, if it can't pass on its OWN merit, it does not merit consideration for our country.

      I believe the Founding Fathers would be violently ill if they were around to see what is taking place in DC and how Obama's, Reid's and Pelosi's actions basically equate to defication upon the Constitution, 2nd only to the Bible as the best composition of written text in history.

    17. Joan, New Mexico says:

      It would be interesting to know who currently owns the land around Jimmy Carter's boyhood home and who would benefit from the $600,000. per acre "deal".

    18. Renee DeShane, Lowes says:

      I understand the government's need to buy up land so it can't be used for energy, or only on their terms (carbon tax, control of our lives). I'm wondering if this land grab could also be for the no borders deal our President is currently working on with Mexico and Canada? A sort of one world order kind of thing? It's interesting to me that our government bought up (took) land in Arizona, forbade U.S. citizens entry,no border guards either, and with no enforcement of the border essentially let robbers, thugs, cartels, and now murderers take up shop and thrive. What kind of diabolical mind decides to do these sorts of things? Definitely not the kind who put their hand on the bible and take an oath to protect the American people from all threats foreign and domestic and mean it.

    19. Don Amador says:

      The Omnibus Bill also contains S. 1571 a bill that transfers 80 acres of prime (and flat) Forest Service recreation land on the Mendocino National Forest to a Solano County Youth Correctional Facility. A bad idea that does not have the support of recreation groups that use the area.

    20. Vic Bailey, Auburn, says:

      The democRATS aren't happy unless they are spending or stealing Billions of Taxpayer dollars. The democRAT party should be extinct just like the Whig and Federalist parties, they became usless just like the democRATS. When something is costing you more than it is bringing in it's time to cut your losses. They just want to Kings and Queens just like in England and the other 11 Monarchies in europe. They forget that we are a REPUBLIC. Their dream will NEVER come true. Most democRATS need to be in prison for crimes against These United States and her people. Last I heard stealing and perjury which Bama is guilty of also is a long 5 years for each count. So let's start adding. Semper Fi.

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    22. RennyG Maryland says:

      when are impeachement procedings going to start???????????????? on all of them!!!!!

    23. Leon Lundquist, Dura says:

      I agree with Lloyd, it is all about suppressing the Energy Industry, both Coal and Oil. Utah's whole vast riches of Natural Resources has been stolen as a matter of State's Rights. The Federal Government is trying to own everything! That's Communism, but these guys don't play around, and interesting as a very large Oil Exporting Nation, Russia the the beneficiary of the Federal Land Grab! Yeah, Obama is serving the Foreign Interest again. Alaska can't drill in ANWAR, not for the stupid carabou, but so the Russians get top money for their Oil and Alaska gets the shaft.

      Progressive actions make sense only if you see them as Communist Infiltrators. That's the only way their actions make sense!

    24. Kaseman says:

      I think it's about time the government starts to liquidate some assests like land to pay off the national debt. This is better than leaving the debt for our children and grandchildren. There are way too many useless National Park units among others that could be better used by private citizens and enterprises!

    25. Norma in Nebraska says:

      Since the federal government owns all this land, are they using it as collateral for the massive amount of debt financed by China???? Perhaps we should be teaching Chinese in our schools instead of Spanish.

      Every acre removed from private ownership removes tax dollars from the government coffers so WHY are they insisting on buying up so much of the country? I am not so sure they should be allowed to just arbitrarily buy land without full disclosure. Pretty soon we will all work for the "master" – all worker bees doing what we are told and when to do it. Private land ownership will be a thing of past generations before the socialization and redistribution of our country.

    26. Ted A says:

      In my reading of the Constitution, Article 1, Section 8, the Fed can own post offices, post roads, Washington DC, Military bases and misc. federal buildings. That is all. All these wilderness areas etc. are not authorized by the Constitution,

    27. C Allen, Nashville T says:

      Ms. Boxer's land management experience is deplorable–she needs to turn the water back on for the CA farmers so they can be productive again.

    28. Corky, Howey in the says:

      Now, I ask everyone, including the president, can we now expect to commit "illegal" offenses (cheat on taxes) and not be punished? Can we follow the Administration's "example" and lie on important matters? (like the census) Can we now follow Congress and "bribe" anyone we want to get ahead? (like land management) Has anyone noticed just how far down the ladder of self asteem our present Congressmen and women have gone? Any futher down they'll need a step ladder to touch bottom. Just sayin…

    29. Pete says:

      The last Omnibus bill was not a federal takeover of lands, because for the most part the lands are already public lands managed by the federal government. But why not use hyperbolic language to inflame the idiots that comprise your base?

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