Congress OKs expansion of Little River Canyon

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Congress has approved a land management
bill expanding a scenic northeast Alabama canyon, a decision that
will allow future purchases to protect the area from encroaching

The Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009, which adjusts
the boundaries of Little River Canyon National Preserve, passed the
House this week and has been sent to the president for his

The bill will set aside more than 2 million acres in nine states as protected wilderness.

Preserve superintendent John Bundy said it will allow the purchase of land on the canyon's east side.

Large houses developed on the rim have led to complaints that dramatic natural scenery was under threat.

The land would be bought only if property owners were willing to sell.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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