A National Park to be Built on the Moon, Plus Other Odd Bills in Congress: Yes or No?
By Alyssa Ashley Lucas | April 22, 2014 7:08 PM EST
What oddities have you heard the congressmen in your country want to pass in Congress? Apparently, there's a bill that pushes for a historic national park to be built on the moon in the U.S.
An Apollo 11 emblem, flown into lunar orbit and signed by the crew - Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Buzz Aldrin, which is estimated at $40,000 to $60,000, is displayed as part of the Space History Sale at Bonham's auction house in New York, April 4, 2014.
The bill is the controversial "Apollo Lunar Landing Legacy Act," which according to the file obtained by SPACE.com was introduced by Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) and co-sponsored by Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas).
The file by gpo.gov stated the bill will not only establish the Apollo Lunar Landing Sites National Historical Park, but will also serve as an act for other purposes, including the preservation and protection of the Apollo Lunar Landing Sites "for the benefit of present and future generations of the nationally significant historic sites associated with the Historical Park."
Other purposes are to "preserve and protect for scientific inquiry" and "to improve public understanding of the Apollo program and its legacy through preservation of the historic resources."
Also, according to the bill, since "commercial enterprises and foreign nations" will have acquired the ability to land on the moon, "it is necessary to protect the Apollo lunar landing sites for posterity."
The Apollo program, also known as Project Apollo is the third human space flight program that was carried out by NASA.
The bill was reported to have "sparked controversies." Michael Listner, founder and principal of Space Law and Policy Solutions firm based in New Hampshire, told SPACE.com that the preservation of the artifacts and the ongoing historic activity of humans on the moon "is an important effort."
But, according to Listner, the act will require a "fresh legal strategy" as no particular country has sovereignty over the moon. To George Robinson, a space law practitioner and retired associate general counsel for the Smithsonian Institution, the report said he considers the bill as "rather clumsy."
Aside from the "Apollo Lunar Landing Legacy Act," Los Angeles Times also cited more odd bills introduced in Congress in the U.S., including "Read the Bills Act," "Department of Peacebuilding Act," "District of Columbia-Maryland Reunion Act" and lastly the "SPA Act," which "would prohibit the operation of the House gym during government shutdown."
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