On March 12, 2019, President Trump signed a significant conservation and public lands bill that includes the establishment of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta as California’s first National Heritage Area (NHA). Congressman John Garamendi (CA-3) and Senator Dianne Feinstein co-authored the language, which earlier this month passed with wide bipartisan support.
“The Council has long championed the Delta Protection Commission’s efforts towards designating the Delta region as a NHA. We look forward to continuing our support of the Commission’s efforts to preserve and are the rich natural, cultural, and historical features of this special landscape within our country,” said Council Chair Susan Tatayon.
“Fulfilling a key recommendation of the Council’s Delta Plan, the NHA designation will help cultivate and retain the public’s appreciation for the significance of this unique region, while building more support for preserving and enhancing the Delta in the years to come,” Tatayon said.
The NHA designation is granted by Congress to places where natural, cultural, historic, and recreational resources combine to form a distinctive landscape and tell a nationally important story about the country and its experience. Locally controlled, NHAs support historic preservation, natural resource conservation, recreation, heritage tourism, and educational projects through public-private partnerships. The designation has no effect on water rights, property rights, or hunting and fishing rights within the designated area.
The Delta Protection Commission will be the local coordinating entity for the Delta NHA and has three years to prepare a management plan to provide guidance on ways to preserve, enhance, and educate the public about Delta and Carquinez Strait heritage.