Message #:
From: AzTeC SW Archaeology SIG
To:   "'Matthias Giessler'" 
Subject: President's Text -- Grand Staircase/Escalante National Monument
Date: Tue, 24 Sep 96 09:26:00 MST
Encoding: 233 TEXT


From: Anne Vawser   

Here is the text of the President's announcement of the Grand 
Staircase/Escalante National Monument:

            THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen.
    Thank you for being here and for being in such good spirits.  Thank you,
    God, for letting the sun come out.  This is a sunny day -- we ought to
    have a sunny day for a sunny day.

                 Thank you, Rob Arnberger, for the work you do here at Grand
    Canyon National Park and for your participation; to all of our
    distinguished guests.  I want to say a special word of thanks to my good
    friend, Governor Roy Romer from Colorado.  And thank you, Secretary
    Bruce Babbitt, for your long, consistent, devoted efforts on behalf of
    America's natural heritage.  (Applause.)

            I also want to thank the Harvey High School Choir and the
    students and the faculty from the Grand Canyon Unified School who are
    here.  (Applause.)  Where are you all?  Thank you.  (Applause.)  I think
    this ought to qualify as an excused absence.  (Laughter.)  Or maybe even
    a field trip.

                 I want to thank all of our tribal leaders who are here and,
    indeed, all of the Native Americans who are here.  We are following in
    your footsteps and honoring your ethic today.  (Applause.)

                 I want to say a special word of thanks to my longtime
    friend, Norma Matheson.  Norma and her late husband, Scott, became great
    friends of Hillary's and mine when we served together as governors.
    After Scott passed away, Norma honored me by asking me to come to Utah
    to speak at a dinner in his honor for a foundation set up in his memory.
    I never was with Scott Matheson, I never even talked to him on the phone
    that I did not feel I was in the presence of a great man.  Both of them
    are truly wonderful human beings.  And I am very grateful for her
    presence here today and for her commitment.  (Applause.)

                 And finally, I want to thank -- more strongly than I can
    ever convey to you -- the Vice President for his passion, his
    commitment, his vision, and his sheer knowledge of environmental and
    natural heritage issues.  It has become a treasure for the United States
    and I have mined it frequently for four years.  (Applause.)

                 I remember when I was trying to decide what sort of person
    I wanted to ask to run with me for Vice President and I made up my mind
    I wanted somebody who was smarter than I was -- that left a large field
    to pick from -- (laughter) -- someone who was philosophically in tune
    with me, someone who would work like crazy, and someone who knew things
    I didn't know.  And I read Earth in the Balance, and I realized it was a
    that I did not feel I was in the presence of a great man.  Both of them
    are truly wonderful human beings.  And I am very grateful for her
    presence here today and for her commitment.  (Applause.)

                 And finally, I want to thank -- more strongly than I can
    ever convey to you -- the Vice President for his passion, his
    commitment, his vision, and his sheer knowledge of environmental and
    natural heritage issues.  It has become a treasure for the United States
    and I have mined it frequently for four years.  (Applause.)

                 I remember when I was trying to decide what sort of person
    I wanted to ask to run with me for Vice President and I made up my mind
    I wanted somebody who was smarter than I was -- that left a large field
    to pick from -- (laughter) -- someone who was philosophically in tune
    with me, someone who would work like crazy, and someone who knew things
    I didn't know.  And I read Earth in the Balance, and I realized it was a
    profoundly important book by someone who knew things I wanted to learn.
    And we have learned a lot and done a lot together over the last four
    years.  Very few things we have done will have a more positive, lasting
    effect than this, and it will always have Al Gore's signature as well.
    And I thank him for what he has done.  (Applause.)

                 Ladies and gentlemen, the first time I ever came to the
    Grand Canyon was also in 1971 in the summer.  And one of the happiest
    memories of my entire life was when, for some flukey reason, even in the
    summertime, I found a place on a rock overlooking the Grand Canyon where
    I was all alone.  And for two hours I sat and I lay down on that rock
    and I watched the sunset.  And I watched the colors change layer after
    layer after layer for two hours.  I could have sat there for two days if
    the sun had just taken a little longer to set.  (Laughter.)

            And even today, 25 years later, in hectic, crazy times, in
    lonely, painful times, my mind drifts back to those two hours that I was
    alone on that rock watching the sunset over this Canyon.  And it will be
    with me till the day I die.    I want more of those sights to be with
    all Americans for all time to come.  (Applause.)

                 As all of you know, today we are keeping faith with the
    future.  I'm about to sign a proclamation that will establish the Grand
    Staircase-Escalante National Monument.  (Applause.)  Why are we doing
    this?  Well, if you look at the Grand Canyon behind me, it seems
    impossible to think that anyone would want to touch it.  But in the past
    there have been those who wanted to build on the Canyon, to blast it, to
    dam it.  Fortunately, these plans were stopped by far-sighted Americans
    who saw that the Grand Canyon was a national treasure, a gift from God
    that could not be improved upon.

            The fact that we stand here is due, in large part, to the
    Antiquities Act of 1906.  The law gives the President the authority to
    protect federal lands of extraordinary cultural, historic and scientific
    value, and in 1908 that's just what Theodore Roosevelt did when he
    protected the Grand Canyon.

                 Since then, several Presidents of both parties, Republicans
    and Democrats, have worked to preserve places that we now take for
    granted as part of our own unchanging heritage:  Bryce Canyon, Zion,
    Glacier Bay, Olympic, Grand Teton.  These places many of you have been
    to, and I've been to many of them myself.  I thank goodness that the
    Antiquities Act was on the books and that Presidents, without regard to
    party, used it to protect them for all of us and for generations to
    come.  (Applause.)

    Today, we add a new name to that list:  the Grand
    Staircase-Escalante National Monument.  Seventy miles to the north of
    here in Utah lies some of the most remarkable land in the world.  We
    will set aside 1.7 million acres of it.  (Applause.)

                 On this site, on this remarkable site, God's handiwork is
    everywhere in the natural beauty of the Escalante Canyons and in the
    Kaiparowits Plateau, in the rock formations that show layer by layer
    billions of years of geology, in the fossil record of dinosaurs and
    other prehistoric life, in the remains of ancient American civilizations
    like the Anacosi Indians.

            Though the United States has changed and Utah has grown,
    prospered and diversified, the land in the Utah monument remains much as
    it did when Mormon pioneers made their way to the Red Canyons in the
    high desert in the late 1800s.  Its uniquely American landscape is now
    one of the most isolated places in the lower 48 states.  In protecting
    it, we live up to our obligation to preserve our natural heritage.  We
    are saying very simply, our parents and grandparents saved the Grand
    Canyon for us; today, we will save the Grand Escalante Canyons and the
    Kaiparowits Plateaus of Utah for our children.  (Applause.)

            Sometimes progress is measured in mastering frontiers, but
    sometimes we must measure progress in protecting frontiers for our
    children and all children to come.  Let me make a few things about this
    proclamation clear.  First, it applies only to federal lands -- lands
    that belong already to the American people.  Second, under the
    proclamation, families will be able to use this canyon as they always
    have -- the land will remain open for multiple uses including hunting,
    fishing, hiking, camping and grazing.  Third, the proclamation makes no
    federal water rights claims.

                 Fourth, while the Grand Staircase-Escalante will be open
    for many activities, I am concerned about a large coal mine proposed for
    the area.  Mining jobs are good jobs, and mining is important to our
    national economy and to our national security.  But we can't have mines
    everywhere, and we shouldn't have mines that threaten our national
    treasures.   (Applause.)

            That is why I am so pleased that PacifiCorp has followed
    the example set by Crown Butte New World Mine in Yellowstone.
    PacifiCorp has agreed to trade its lease to mine coal on these lands for
    better, more appropriate sites outside the monument area.  I hope that
    Andalex, a foreign company, will follow PacifiCorp example and work with
    us to find a way to pursue its mining operations elsewhere.  (Applause.)

                 Now, let me also say a word to the people of Utah.  Mining
    revenues from federal and state lands help to support your schools. I
    know the children of Utah have a big stake in school lands located
    within the boundaries of the monument that I am designating today.  In
    the past these scattered school lands have never generated significant
    revenues for the Utah school trust.  That's why Governor Scott Matheson,
    one of the greatest public figures in the history of Utah, asked the
    Congress to authorize the exchange of non-revenue producing lands for
    other federal lands that can actually provide revenue for the school
    trust.

            Finally, I was able to sign legislation to accomplish that
    goal in 1993.  And I will now use my office to accelerate the exchange
    process.   I have directed Secretary Babbitt to consult with Governor
    Levitt, Congressman Orton, Senators Bennett and Hatch to form an
    exchange working group to respond promptly to all exchange requests and
    other issues submitted by the state and to resolve reasonable
    differences in valuation in favor of the school trust.  By taking these
    steps, we can both protect the natural heritage of Utah's children and
    ensure them a quality educational heritage.  (Applause.)

            I will say again, creating this national monument should
    not and will not come at the expense of Utah's children.  Today is also
    the beginning of a unique three-year process during which the Bureau of
    Land Management will work with state and local governments, Congressman
    Orton and the Senators and other interests to set up a land management
    process that will be good for the people of Utah and good for Americans.
    And I know a lot of you will want to be involved in that and to be heard
    as well.

            Let us always remember, the Grand Staircase-Escalante is
    for our children.  For our children, we have worked hard to make sure
    that we have a clean and safe environment, as the Vice President said.
    I appreciate what he said about the Yellowstone, the Mojave Desert, the
    Everglades, the work we have done all across this country to try to
    preserve our natural heritage and clean up our environment.  I hope that
    we can once again pursue that as an American priority without regard to
    party or politics or election seasons.  We all have the same stake in
    our common future.  (Applause.)

                 If you'll permit me a personal note, another one, it was 63
    years ago that a great Democrat first proposed that we create a national
    monument in Utah's Canyonlands.  His name was Harold Ickes.  He was
    Franklin Roosevelt's Interior Secretary.  And I'm sorry he never got a
    chance to see that his dream would become a reality, but I'm very glad
    that his son and namesake is my Deputy Chief of Staff and is here today.
    (Applause.)

            And it was 30 years before that, 93 years ago, that a great
    Republican President, Theodore Roosevelt, said we should make the Grand
    Canyon a national monument.  In 1903, Teddy Roosevelt came to this
    place and said a few words from the rim of the Canyon I'd like share
    with you as we close today:

                 "Leave the Grand Canyon as it is.  You cannot improve upon
    it.  What you can do is keep it for your children, your children's
    children, all who come after you.  We have gotten past the stage when we
    are pardoned if we treat any part of our country as something to be
    skinned for.  The use of the present generation, whether it is the
    forest, the water, the scenery -- whatever it is, handle it so that your
    children's children will get the benefit of it."

            It was President Roosevelt's wisdom and vision that
    launched the Progressive Era and prepared our nation for the 20th
    century.  Today we must do the same for the 21st century.  I have talked
    a lot about building a bridge of possibility to that 21st century, by
    meeting our challenges and protecting our values.  Today the Grand
    Staircase-Escalante National Monument becomes a great pillar in our
    bridge to tomorrow.

                 Thank you and God bless you all.  (Applause.)

                END                        12:27 P.M. MST