Press Releases

Roe Introduces Tennessee Wilderness Act

f t # e
For Immediate Release, February 11, 2016 | Tiffany Haverly (202-226-8072) | comments

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Phil Roe, M.D. (R-TN) introduced the Tennessee Wilderness Act.

Roe released the following statement on the bill:

"As an avid outdoorsman, I strongly believe we must protect the beautiful lands we’re fortunate to have in East Tennessee. Though these particular lands have been treated as wilderness for more than a decade, it’s important to officially protect them. I believe it’s also important that we continue to allow permit holders the ability to hunt and fish on the land, which is why the bill includes specific language to protect these privileges. I’m proud to join Senators Alexander and Corker in this important effort, and I look forward to working with my colleagues to keep Tennessee beautiful for years and generations to come.”

Morgan Sommerville, Southern Regional Director of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy released the following statement:

“The Appalachian Trail Conservancy believes that wilderness is the best protection available for the A.T. We want to thank Congressman Roe for protecting the incredible lands and waters surrounding this iconic footpath. We endorse new wilderness designations along the A.T. as long as enough volunteers are available to help maintain the Trail. Happily, regarding the expansions of the Big Laurel Branch and Sampson Mountain Wilderness Areas in the Cherokee National Forest, new volunteers are rising to the challenge.”  

Mary Johnson of Land Partners in Bristol released the following statement:

“I appreciate Rep. Roe’s leadership in protecting these special parts of the Cherokee National Forest. This bill ensures that future generations will always be able to hunt, fish, hike, camp and experience our remarkable mountains, creeks and rivers just as we do today. Rep. Roe's leadership shows that preserving our natural heritage is a conservative value, and I commend him for introducing this legislation.”

A copy of the Tennessee Wilderness Act can be found here. This bill would designate nearly 7,500 acres in Tennessee’s First Congressional District as wilderness. The bill also ensures the state of Tennessee continues to exercise jurisdiction over the fish and wildlife management of the land, protecting permit holders’ ability to hunt and fish. This bill will not impact privately-owned land.

Tennessee Senators Alexander and Corker introduced a bill last year that also protects these areas.  
f t # e