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                     Office of the Press Secretary
                        (Lake Placid, New York)
For Immediate Release                                    August 18, 2000


Today I am pleased to sign into law H.R. 1749, an Act "To designate Wilson Creek in Avery and Caldwell Counties, North Carolina, as a component of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System."

Wilson Creek possesses all the remarkable values that distinguish the free-flowing rivers of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System: exceptional scenery; recreational opportunities; fish, wildlife, and botanical communities; and historic and cultural sites. The designation will protect and conserve Wilson Creek and provide continued opportunities for fishing, white water boating, swimming, and hiking.

I applaud the efforts of the North Carolina congressional delegation along with the County Commissioners and residents of Avery and Caldwell Counties who have worked to preserve and protect this remarkable resource. Their individual and collective efforts have preserved for the people of the State of North Carolina and all Americans a natural treasure that, together with the other rivers of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, will continue to add immeasurably to the quality of our environment and our national life.

Designation of Wilson Creek as a wild, scenic, and recreational river will finalize a nearly 20-year conservation initiative and will guarantee for future generations that the river and its values are conserved. I am pleased to sign this legislation, which will permanently protect Wilson Creek as part of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System.