La Pine Land Conveyance Act

Floor Speech

By:  Greg Walden
Date: July 31, 2012
Location: Washington, DC


Mr. WALDEN. I want to thank my colleagues here on the floor today for their support of this legislation, S. 270, the La Pine Land Conveyance Act.

This legislation was originally crafted over in the Senate by my friend and colleague, Senator Wyden. We've worked together on this project and thought that the most expeditious way to solve the problem for the people of La Pine was to just move his bill on through the Senate, and that's what we're doing today.

The La Pine Land Conveyance Act is the result of efforts of local officials who recognized years ago that for Oregon's newest city, the city of La Pine, to be able to take care of its residents, it needed a helping hand from the Federal Government. Here's why:

Seventy-eight percent of Deschutes County, the county in which the city of La Pine is located, is managed, owned, and controlled by the Federal Government. They're literally surrounded by Federal land. In fact, their own library sits on BLM land.

So, as they became a city and began to try to address the issues that brought about their desire to be a city, they realized they needed to be able to expand a little and take care of some of their problems. So, S. 270 will provide the city with 750 acres so it can build a new wastewater treatment facility, which will allow the community to move off of septic systems and onto municipal water and sewer systems. They have a real problem in La Pine with a fairly high water table and issues related to septic systems, so this will help solve that.

In addition, this legislation also transfers 150 acres to the La Pine Park and Recreation District to establish a more permanent home for what's known as the ``Greatest Little Rodeo in Oregon,'' the La Pine Rodeo, and also to help them build out one of their other celebrations, one which all Americans take advantage of, and that's the Fourth of July.

Now, why are these two things important? Well, among another reasons, it's a job creator. Expanding out the rodeo grounds really will help them grow jobs in this remote, rural community in Deschutes County. In addition, of course, transferring the other lands will let them have a library on their own city ground and be able to take care of the water needs for the community.

So I thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for support of S. 270. This is one of those commonsense bills that actually brings us together and we can get some work done here for the people back home.


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