Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Relating to Concession Rights in National Parks.

October 09, 1965

I HAVE today signed into law H.R. 2091 establishing policies governing concession rights in our national parks.

The bill is supported by the Department of Interior and by a strong bipartisan majority in the Congress. It is designed to stimulate the development of better facilities for the tens of millions of Americans who enjoy our national parks each year. In essence it writes into law the concessions policies that have been followed by the Interior Department in the past on a regulatory basis.

It is not enough, however, to establish such .policies for one department alone. Both the Department of Agriculture and the Corps of Engineers provide recreational opportunities for millions of Americans each year. To the extent that it is practical to do so, the Government should have a common policy governing concessions on federally owned lands.

Therefore, I have asked the Director of the Bureau of the Budget to make a thorough study of policies governing concessions currently in force, and to recommend a common approach to the granting of concessions by all Federal agencies. This study will be completed and recommendations made by April 1, 1966.

In order that new concession agreements entered into by the Department of Interior under the terms of this bill may be reviewed in the light of the Bureau of the Budget study, I have asked Secretary Udall to limit the terms of those concessions to 1 year, whenever practicable. This will give the administration and the Congress an opportunity to examine the desirability of new legislation affecting all publicly owned lands.

It is important that the operation of attractive facilities be encouraged in our national parks. It is just as important that lands belonging to the whole people be managed in a way that benefits the people for whom they are held in trust.

Note: As enacted, the bill (H.R. 2091) is Public Law 89-249 (79 Stat. 969).

The recommendations of the Bureau of the Budget were not made public by the White House.

The statement was released at the Naval Hospital, Bethesda, Md.

Lyndon B. Johnson, Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Relating to Concession Rights in National Parks. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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