Tester Secures Guarantee on Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act

Landmark Bill Will Receive Senate Vote Early Next Year

(U.S. Senate)-U.S. Senator Jon Tester has secured a guarantee that his Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act will receive a Senate vote early next year.

Tester made an eleventh-hour attempt to include the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act in an end of year public lands legislative package, but the bill was blocked by Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) from receiving a vote. Tester then worked with Senate leadership to secure the guarantee that the landmark bill will receive a Senate vote at the beginning of the 116th Congress, which begins on January 3.

“The Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act has been years in the making and now Senate passage is in sight,” Tester said. “I will hold Congress accountable to our agreement and make sure that they deliver on their promise to permanently protect the doorstep of Yellowstone Park from mining that will hurt our economy and harm our clean water.”

Beginning in 2015, Tester met with local residents and small-business owners to build collaborative legislation that prevents mines from expanding onto public land in the region.

Tester introduced the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act in April 2017 and it received a Senate hearing in July 2017.

Tester’s bill permanently withdraws federal mineral rights on 30,000 acres of public land in the Custer Gallatin National Forest adjacent to the Absaroka Beartooth Wilderness and Yellowstone National Park, and it eliminates the ability for proposed mines to expand onto unclaimed public land.