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Doggett Urges Committee To Act Quickly On Missions Expansion Resolution

Eileen Pace

Congressman Lloyd Doggett testified Tuesday before a committee on Capital Hill to expand the boundary of the San Antonio Missions National Park.

Doggett expressed his desire to expand the boundary of the San Antonio Missions National Park by 137 acres to the Committee on Natural Resources.

The area includes Missions San Jose, San Juan and Espada.

"The Spanish Missions in San Antonio are really a unique treasure for Texans and for all of America," Doggett said. "The Missions National Historic Park preserves the largest collection of Spanish colonial resources anywhere in America. It is an educational, historical and cultural resource that is each year bringing over a million people to enjoy and learn from it."

Doggett said his House Resolution 885 has the support of the congressional delegation that represents any part of Bexar County as well as the Archdiocese of San Antonio.

Doggett testified the committee has considered similar legislation before and included provisions like a 'no federal purchase of land' would be included.

He did make one exception.

"The bill, as filed, includes a study to explore the possibility of expanding the park to include some old ranch lands that were associated with the Missions. I understand that there is some objection on the committee to that and let me say our goal is to get this additional 137 acres connected to the park. If the committee feels that the study stands in the way of passing this bipartisan bill please amend it and give us the rest of the bill."

Doggett said this is a modest step to enhance a national treasure and urged the members of the committee to move on it promptly.