Entries in National Monument (2)


Obama Names California's Fort Ord a National Monument

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In honor of Earth Day on Sunday, President Obama will Friday designate Fort Ord -- a former military base on California’s central coast – as the country’s newest national monument.

The fort, which closed in 1994, has become a popular site for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding, playing host to more than 100,000 visitors a year, according to the White House.

“Fort Ord’s dramatic landscape lives in the memories of thousands of veterans as their first taste of Army life, as a final stop before deploying to war, or as a home base during their military career,” Obama said in a statement.

“This national monument will not only protect one of the crown jewels of California’s coast, but will also honor the heroism and dedication of men and women who served our nation and fought in the major conflicts of the 20th century.”

The president’s action will now afford the 28,000-acre site north of Monterey protection by the federal government as a conservation and recreation area, officials say. It will be closed to oil and gas drilling and mining and receive funds for management and upkeep through the Department of the Interior.

The designation, which does not require congressional approval under the Antiquities Act, is Obama’s second of his term. In November 2011, he named Fort Monroe in Virginia a national monument.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Obama Says Fort Monroe Will Help Create Jobs

KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In yet another executive action, President Obama Tuesday signed a proclamation to designate Fort Monroe a National Monument, billing it as “an incredibly important economic boost to the region.”
“Fort Monroe has played a part in some of the darkest and some of the most heroic moments in American history. But today isn’t just about preserving a national landmark -- it’s about helping to create jobs and grow the local economy. Steps like these won’t replace the bold action we need from Congress to get our economy moving and strengthen middle-class families, but they will make a difference,” Obama said in a written statement.
According to the White House, the preservation of Fort Monroe in Hampton, Va., will help create nearly 3,000 jobs in the state. “It will add millions of dollars to the local economy in and around Hampton.  And so this is a win-win. Not only is it good for the people of that region now, but it also allows us to set aside this incredibly important site for the enjoyment and appreciation of generations to come,” Obama told reporters Tuesday.
The announcement marks yet another unilateral action by the president intended to grow the economy and circumvent Republicans in Congress, who are blocking his $447 billion jobs bill.
“There’s a strong economic component to this. We think we’re going to see additional jobs in Virginia as a consequence of this.  But for those members of Congress who are here, I still need some action from Congress on the American Jobs Act and other steps,” Obama joked. “But in the meantime, this is going to make a big difference.”
Fort Monroe is integral to the history of slavery, the Civil War, and the U.S. military. It was the place where Dutch traders first brought enslaved Africans in 1619 and during the Civil War the Fort became a place for escaped slaves to find refuge.
In 1861, the Fort was the site of General Benjamin Butler’s “Contraband Decision,” which provided a pathway to freedom for thousands of slaves.
“I am looking forward to not only visiting myself but also taking Malia and Sasha down there so they can get a little bit of sense of their history,” the president said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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