According to recently released polling, "80 percent of Los Angeles County voters support the proposed protection of the San Gabriel Mountains and rivers." Support is even higher among Latinos (88%) and Asian-Americans (82%). Women with kids in their household (like me) and voters under 35 (not me any longer) had the highest rates of support at 90%. But even self-described conservatives back the proposal – with nearly 3/4 in favor.
These results are no surprise. They underscore just how important these lands are in providing opportunities for outdoor recreation and experiencing nature in this diverse, highly urbanized region that is one of the most park-poor in the country. And how important they are in providing clean drinking water for the region, especially in this time of drought.
The results also further illustrate the broad local support for legislative efforts to permanently protect these lands that I’ve previously blogged about. But so far that bill has stalled in Congress, and its author Congresswoman Chu is now calling on the President to use his authority to protect the federal lands in the San Gabriels by designating them a National Monument.
A majority of those polled agreed: they would tell the President to take action on this now.
They'll have an opportunity to do so next week. The Obama administration is holding a public meeting next Tuesday, August 26th at 4pm at the Performing Arts Center of Baldwin Park. Given what the poll shows, I'd expect a strong showing there in support.