Washington, DC – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Natural Resources Management Act (S. 47), which includes a bill co-authored by Congresswoman Katie Hill (D-CA) and Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-CA) to establish a memorial and national monument for the 1928 Saint Francis Dam disaster. California Senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris introduced the bill in the Senate, which was incorporated into S. 47 and passed by the Senate on February 12. With today’s House passage, the legislation goes to the President’s desk for signature. More than 400 people perished when the dam burst on March 12, 1928, making this the second deadliest tragedy in California state history, behind only the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.
“The Saint Francis Dam collapse was one of the most terrible tragedies in California history, yet the events of this historic day aren’t widely known,” said Congresswoman Brownley. “From the victims who sadly lost their lives, to the telephone operators and highway patrol officers who tried to warn their neighbors of the danger of the oncoming water, creating a memorial will ensure Californians for generations to come remember this part of our history and will serve as a reminder of the critical importance of our nation’s infrastructure. I am so pleased this bill is headed to the President’s desk, and I thank Congresswoman Hill and Senators Feinstein and Harris for their work to recognize this significant chapter in our state’s history.”
“The St. Francis Dam Disaster took place 10 miles north of what is now my hometown of Santa Clarita. In honor of the hundreds of lives lost, this Memorial will uplift the stories of the tragedy and serve as a constant reminder that our infrastructure is deeply important to our community safety and security,” said Congresswoman Hill. “I am thankful to my neighbor, Congresswoman Julia Brownley for her leadership on this issue and to our Senators Kamala Harris and Dianne Feinstein for their support in the Senate.”