Several other provisions in the bill designed to protect the environment and allow local communities to expand and thrive were endorsed by NAHB, including the exclusion of habitat conservation plans and other species management and conservation plans from critical habitat designations.
“By codifying these important practices, the legislation would provide powerful incentives to private landowners to continue entering into such agreements to ensure species conservation and preservation,” said Walters.
The legislation would also require the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to take into account the direct, indirect and cumulative economic impacts when designating critical habitat and would establish statutory definitions for two key terms relating to critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act — “geographical area occupied by the species” and “essential to the conservation of the species.”
“Protecting our nation’s wildlife in a way that is cost-effective and clarifying the meaning of these terms will help to ensure that common-sense conservation policies and programs — and not litigation — will drive the critical habitat designation process. With the notable exception of linking critical habitat and recovery planning, NAHB believes that H.R. 2933 makes great strides in this direction,” said Walters.
To read the legislation, click here, and enter H.R. 2933 in the box at the upper left.
For more information, e-mail Jason Lynn at NAHB or call 800-368-5242 x8307.
Photo by Herman Farrer
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