Joshua Tree, CA – Today, the California State Assembly passed Assembly Joint Resolution (AJR) 15, a bill to protect federal public lands, maintain the integrity of the Antiquities Act, and honor the designation of national monuments designated since 1906. The bill is a response to the Department of the Interior (DOI) review of the national monuments designated using the Antiquities Act since 1996.

The bill received a letter of support from 57 conservation organizations throughout California thanking the state legislature for conveying to the federal government that America’s protected federal public lands are national treasures that belong to all Americans for future generations.

Based on their size and the year of their designation, there are currently seven California national monuments under review, including two in the California desert: Mojave Trails and Sand to Snow. The Mojave Desert Land Trust (MDLT) has formed a community of “Desert Defenders” to support the California desert national monuments by holding local rallies and collecting public comments to submit to the DOI.

“The passing of AJR 15 demonstrates that California’s political leaders are listening to their constituents,” commented Danielle Segura, Executive Director, MDLT. “In the California desert, our community worked for over a decade to designate these national monuments, and we have already seen the historical, economic, and ecological benefits they provide.”

The bill will go before the California State Senate in early June.

The Mojave Desert Land Trust (MDLT) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the mission to protect and care for lands with natural, scenic and cultural value within the Mojave Desert. For more information, visit www.mdlt.org

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