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Reichert pushes National Heritage Site federal designation for the Mountains to Sound Greenway

May 2, 2013 · 1:42 PM

U.S. Representative Dave Reichert (R-WA, District 8) announced legislation Tuesday to designate the Mountains to Sound Greenway as a National Heritage Area.

Reichert introduced the bill, HR 1785, to Congress on April 26.

“Designating the Mountains to Sound Greenway a National Heritage Area is yet another step in recognizing Washington State’s distinguished influence and contribution to the national movement of keeping America green, clean and pristine,” said Reichert, of Auburn. “The natural wealth and beauty of the Greenway represents a truly unique national gem and I’m proud to represent such an integral part of our nation’s heritage, nestled in the heart of Washington state.

“The Mountains to Sound Greenway has played a vital role in many of our nation’s most important industries: from salmon and coal, to timber and recreation, to technology and green building,” he said. “I am so pleased to champion this effort, helping to preserve this important piece of Washington state’s heritage, which has been so central to America’s history, for our children and grandchildren.”

The Mountains to Sound Greenway is a 1.5 million-acre landscape with alpine peaks, wilderness lakes and forests that connect by road, rail and trail to rural towns and city high-rises, sustaining generations through an abundance of natural resources. Today, the Greenway’s scenic beauty is the backdrop for the daily lives of 1.4 million residents who live, work and play in communities deeply rooted to the land around them.

“National Heritage Area designation of the Mountains to Sound Greenway will communicate the national significance of the Greenway and build public awareness, recognition and involvement in stewardship of this landscape between Seattle and Ellensburg,” said Bill Chapman, president of the Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust. “Our goal is to empower citizens, businesses, interest groups and government to work together more efficiently to promote and preserve the Greenway for generations to come.”

Metropolitan King County Councilmembers Reagan Dunn and Larry Phillips, the co-sponsors of a motion calling for federal designation of the Greenway, released this statement:

“We applaud and thank Congressman Reichert for sponsoring the legislation supporting the Mountains to Sound Greenway. He has been a staunch advocate for this important and unique piece of land. Receiving the designation of National Heritage Area, should it pass, would be a first of its kind in Washington state.”

The Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust is a nonprofit organization with a mission that leads and inspires action to conserve and enhance the landscape from Seattle across the Cascade Mountains to Central Washington, ensuring a long-term balance between people and nature.”

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