News Releases

(Washington D.C.) - Today U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) applauded another crucial step in the process of enacting the "Wild Sky Wilderness Act of 2007" after the House Committee on Natural Resources approved the House version of the bill. The bill will now be moved to the House floor for a vote. The House version is sponsored by Congressman Rick Larsen (D - WA 2nd). Senator Murray's Senate Bill has been referred to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

The Wild Sky legislation designates 106,577 acres of national forest in east Snohomish County as wilderness. This designation will preserve the pristine nature of the land, and allow for increased recreational use by millions of Washingtonians. Senator Murray and Congressman Larsen have attempted to pass this legislation since 2002. With significant political roadblocks having been cleared after the 2006 election, Senator Murray is now optimistic about the bills chances for passage in the early portion of the 110th Congress. Senator Murray released the following statement after the House passed the legislation:

"After today's committee action, this bill has now gotten further along in the House legislative process then ever before. It is a clear sign that we are on our way to making the Wild Sky area a reality. I commend Congressman Larsen for leading the charge on this bill in the House during difficult times, and I am so happy that we will cross the finish line on this together.

"With more than 2.5 million Washington residents located within a 90 minute drive of the proposed area, this legislation is going to provide boundless recreational opportunities for generations of Washingtonians. It will also preserve the natural beauty of our landscape, and protect an irreplaceable piece of Washington's natural heritage."