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Last week, Representatives Steve Knight (CA-25) and Julia Brownley's (CA-26) bill, H.R. 2156, the St. Francis Dam Memorial Act passed the House Natural Resources Committee with unanimous support.

“The St. Francis Dam Disaster of 1928 is a devastating reminder of how powerful nature can be,” said Rep. Steve Knight. “I am proud to be a part of the effort to commemorate this tragedy and set a memorial for the lives lost. The people of Santa Clarita Valley have been asking for this memorial for years and I am proud of the support this bill has received from the community and my colleagues here in Washington, DC.”

H.R. 2156, the Saint Francis Dam Disaster National Memorial Act, would create a national memorial at the site of the 1928 St. Francis Dam Disaster in the San Francisquito Canyon, which claimed the lives of 431 people. The memorial would be funded by private donations and establish a 440 acre national monument encompassing the designated national memorial area that was devastated in the resulting flood.

“This legislation will enable the victims who perished in the St. Francis Dam Disaster to be rightfully memorialized. I commend Rep. Knight for his commitment to this important issue and his work on this bipartisan bill to appropriately honor and remember these individuals for generations to come,” said House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT).

The legislation is similar to a measure authored by Knight and Brownley last Congress, which passed the House of Representatives with unanimous support. Prior to passage Knight testified in the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands about the need to memorialize the victims of the disaster. He was joined in the hearing by Dr. Alan Pollack, president of the Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society, who detailed the dam’s history, beginning with its flawed design and construction and ending with its abrupt and devastating collapse.

“This bill not only serves as a memorial but will also help educate the public of the tragedy that once shook our community,” said Knight. “I look forward to further actions on this bill.”