Washington congressional members offer Olympic Peninsula act

PORT ANGELES — Washington Senator Patty Murray and Representative Derek Kilmer have introduced the Wild Olympics Wilderness and Wild and Scenic Rivers Act of 2015 in Congress.

The act introduced Thursday is designed to protect environmentally sensitive parts of the Olympic Peninsula.

Murray and Kilmer say it also will support recreation and preserve jobs. Murray says the plan was the result of years of negotiations and compromise.

The act would designate more than 125,000 acres of federal land as wildness in the Olympic National Forest. It also would designate 464 miles of rivers as wild and scenic.

Conservation groups praised the plan.

Wild Olympics Coalition member Tim McNulty says this is “truly landmark legislation for the Olympics’ unprotected wild lands.”

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