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Congressman Don Young Introduces Legislation to Block Presidential Attempts to Lock Away Alaska’s Oceans

Washington, D.C. Today, Alaska Congressman Don Young introduced legislation to prevent the future closure of oceans from economic and recreational activity, including resource development and fishing, without the approval of Congress. The introduction of the Marine Access and State Transparency (MAST) Act comes as President Joe Biden breaks modern records for issuing Executive Orders, particularly concerning Alaska.

“The Obama years were rife with massive expansions of executive power, and it has become clear that President Biden has taken a cue from his former boss. President Biden’s first two weeks on the job have broken records for Executive Orders, and we have already seen the President attempt to cripple Alaska’s energy sector and destroy good-paying jobs. Congress must assert its power and keep him from doing the same to our fishing and water recreation industries,” said Congressman Don Young. “I am proud to introduce the MAST Act, which will empower Congress – not the President – to make determinations relating to the designation of marine sanctuaries. This is not just about President Biden, but about future Presidents as well. Expanding marine sanctuaries without proper engagement with local communities, business leaders, and Alaska Native entities could cripple industries and harm the families they support. No President should unilaterally close off even one square mile of land or ocean without first seeking approval from Congress. I will continue working hard to ensure that our state is open for business, and that Alaskans have a seat at the table in future debates over sanctuary designations.”

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