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Calendar No. 450
109th Congress Report
2nd Session 109-258
ELIZABETH HARTWELL MASON NECK NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE RENAMING ACT
May 25, 2006.--Ordered to be printed
Mr. Inhofe, from the Committee on Environment and Public Works,
submitted the following
R E P O R T
[to accompany S. 2127]
[Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]
The Committee on Environment and Public Works, to which was
referred a bill (S. 2127) to redesignate the Mason Neck
National Wildlife Refuge in the State of Virginia as the
``Elizabeth Hartwell Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge'',
having considered the same, reports favorably thereon and
recommends that the bill do pass.
General Statement and Background
The Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge is located in
Fairfax County, approximately 18 miles from Washington, DC. The
refuge headquarters is located in Woodbridge, Virginia, and the
area is managed as part of the Potomac River National Wildlife
Refuge complex which also includes Occoquan Bay and
Featherstone refuges in Prince William County. Established in
1969, the refuge includes 2,277 acres of mature oak-hickory
forest, freshwater marshes, and almost 4.5 miles of shoreline
along the Potomac River and Occoquan Bay. The refuge was the
first Federal refuge established specifically for the
protection of nesting, feeding, and roosting habitat for the
then-endangered bald eagle. The Mason Neck peninsula currently
has seven eagle nest sites (including 3 on the refuge), an
eagle roost site, and a wintering population of 50-60 eagles.
One of the largest blue heron rookeries in the Mid-Atlantic
area, averaging 1,500 nests, is on the refuge along with the
largest freshwater marsh in northern Virginia.
Almost 4 miles of hiking trails provide visitors the
opportunity to view and enjoy the refuge's wildlife which
includes over 200 species of birds, 31 species of mammals, and
44 species of reptiles and amphibians. One of the trails is
fully handicapped accessible. The refuge is listed as one of
the 10 best eagle viewing areas in the Nation. Annual
visitation is between twenty-five and thirty thousand people.
Objectives of the Legislation
S. 2127 would rename the Mason Neck National Wildlife
Refuge as the Elizabeth Hartwell Mason Neck National Wildlife
Refuge. The late Elizabeth Hartwell's contributions to the
conservation of the Mason Neck peninsula are substantial. Ms.
Hartwell, a resident of Mason Neck and a conservation activist,
spearheaded the movement to protect habitat on the Mason Neck
peninsula. Through her efforts, the Nature Conservancy
ultimately purchased the land for later resale to the local,
State, and Federal Governments. Ms. Hartwell also petitioned
Congress for the initial $3 million appropriation to purchase
land for the refuge. While part of the broader preservation
movement, she is often given virtually sole credit for the
creation of the refuge and the Mason Neck State Park.
Section 1. Elizabeth Hartwell Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge.
This section provides that the Mason Neck National Wildlife
Refuge in the State of Virginia shall be known and designated
as the ``Elizabeth Hartwell Mason Neck National Wildlife
On December 16, 2005, Senator Allen introduced S. 2127,
which was cosponsored by Senator Warner. The bill was received,
read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on Environment
and Public Works. The committee met on May 23, 2006 to consider
the bill. S. 2127 was ordered favorably reported without
amendment by voice vote.
No committee hearings were held on S. 2127.
The Committee on Environment and Public Works met to
consider S. 2127 on May 23, 2006. The bill was ordered
favorably reported by voice vote. No roll call votes were
Regulatory Impact Statement
In compliance with section 11(b) of rule XXVI of the
Standing Rules of the Senate, the committee finds that S. 2127
does not create any additional regulatory burdens, nor will it
cause any adverse impact on the personal privacy of
In compliance with the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995
(Public Law 104-4), the committee finds that S. 2127 would not
impose Federal intergovernmental unfunded mandates on State,
local, or tribal governments.
Cost of Legislation
Section 403 of the Congressional Budget and Impoundment
Control Act requires that a statement of the cost of the
reported bill, prepared by the Congressional Budget Office, be
included in the report. That statement follows:
May 24, 2006.
Hon. James M. Inhofe,
Chairman, Committee on Environment and Public Works,
Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has
reviewed the following legislation, as ordered reported by the
Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works on May 23,
S. 2127, a bill to redesignate the Mason Neck
Wildlife Refuge in the State of Virginia as the ``Elizabeth
Hartwell Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge''; and
CBO estimates that enactment of [this bill] would have no
significant impact on the Federal budget and would not affect
direct spending or revenues. [This bill] contain[s] no
intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would impose no costs on
State, local, or tribal governments. If you wish further
details on this estimate, we will be pleased to provide them.
Donald B. Marron,
Changes in Existing Law
Section 12 of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules of the Senate
requires the committee to publish changes in existing law made
by the bill as reported. Passage of this bill will make no
changes to existing law.