Cantwell Joins President Obama for Signing of San Juan Islands National Monument Declaration

I was proud to work with Senator Murray, Representatives Larsen and DelBene, and the many stakeholders involved in helping to make today a reality.”

The citizen-driven effort to preserve this land has generated widespread, passionate support from the community. In February 2012, Cantwell, Salazar and members of the community held a public meeting in Anacortes to discuss federal efforts to preserve the land. In July 2011, Cantwell and Larsen held a community listening session in Friday Harbor to hear feedback on the effort to create a National Conservation Area. The effort to preserve the land is supported by Salazar, who visited the region in April 2011 to view the parcels proposed for protection and discuss the proposal with local stakeholders.

During the 112th Congress, Cantwell led legislation in the Senate with support from Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) that would designate the land a National Conservation Area. Larsen led companion legislation in the House. Earlier this month, Cantwell reintroduced her legislation again with support from Murray. Larsen and DelBene introduced companion legislation in the House.

Permanent protection of the approximately 1,000 acres of federally owned land ensures the land remains in its current state and publicly accessible, despite higher use. The federally owned lands include over 60 locations that range from pine forests to lighthouses and are visited by more than 70,000 people every year.