Congressman Jason Smith’s Amendment Will Protect Rights in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways
WASHINGTON – Today, February 5, 2014, the United States House of Representatives passed H.R. 3950, The Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act (SHARE Act) to protect the rights of hunters and fishermen on public lands. Included within the SHARE Act is an amendment offered by Congressman Jason Smith (MO-8) that will ensure motorized vessels in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways (ONSR) cannot be restricted. The National Park Service has proposed limiting the use of motorized vessels in drafts of new management plans for the ONSR.
“It’s a shame the Park Service is trying to limit access in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways but I am committed to ensuring the rivers remain accessible. My amendment on The Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act will ensure no new restrictions on motorized vessels will be allowed in the park,” said Smith. “The Draft General Management Plans proposed by the Park Service will have a lot of support from Obama bureaucrats and big city environmentalists, but my constituents do not want the Park Service further restricting their rights on public lands. Moving forward I will continue fighting any attempts to designate new wilderness areas in the ONSR, close walking and horse trails, limit hunting, fishing, trapping, gigging, close access points, ban camping or other recreational activities in the park.”
The Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act will keep public lands open for hunting and fishing. Specifically, the legislation includes measures to:
- Require hunting, recreational shooting and fishing to be recognized activities on all Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management properties;
- Protect recreational shooting in National Parks under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management;
- Clarify that the Environmental Protection Agency does not have the right to regulate lead components found in either traditional ammunition or fishing tackle;
- Protect law-abiding individuals’ Constitutional right to bear arms on lands owned by the Army Corps of Engineers;
- Ensure motor vessels cannot be further restricted in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways.