Roxanne Quimby, the founder of natural-cosmetics firm Burt’s Bees, has formally donated 87,500 acres in rural Maine from her charitable foundation to the federal government, which is considering designating the property a national monument, writes the Associated Press.
Ownership of the swath of northern Maine’s Katahdin region was transferred to the Interior Department earlier this month. Ms. Quimby’s family has lobbied the Obama administration for monument status, which, unlike a national-park designation, does not require an act of Congress.
Ms. Quimby, a noted conservationist, announced plans in 2011 to donate the property for the purposes of establishing a national park. The proposal has generated heated controversy in the region, with supporters calling it an economic lifeline for the depressed area while Maine’s governor, members of its Congressional delegation, and most local residents characterize it as an unwanted federal intrusion.