Another push to expand and preserve Alpine Lakes Wilderness
There's bipartisan support to expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness in the Cascades. Republican Representative Dave Reichert and Democratic Senator Patty Murray reintroduced bills to expand the wilderness area and designate part of the Pratt River and the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River as wild and scenic.
Reichert and other members of Washington's delegation have introduced similar measures in recent years, but the bills didn't pass both the House and Senate. In a statement, Richert said:
Senator Murray and I have renewed our vow to work hard to move this proposal through the 112th Congress and see it signed into law.
The legislation calls for enlarging the popular recreational destination east of Seattle by 22,000 acres. A "wild and scenic" designation for the Pratt River and the middle fork of the Snoqualmie River would preserve it from development.