Rep. Heck, Jodi Goldberg Testify at Hearing on Good Samaritan Search and Recovery Bill

Jun 6, 2013 Issues: Regulations

Bill would help bring closure for families of missing persons

WASHINGTON - Congressman Joe Heck (NV-03) today was joined by Jodi Goldberg, sister of murdered Las Vegas taxi driver Keith Goldberg, in testifying before the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Public Lands and Environmental Regulation in support of the Good Samaritan Search and Recovery Act. The Good Samaritan Search and Recovery Act, introduced by Rep. Heck last month, requires that permits for accessing public lands be issued to volunteer groups within 48 hours of application and that groups are not responsible for obtaining an insurance policy given they waive federal government liability.

Congressman Heck spoke at the hearing about how bureaucratic roadblocks have prevented volunteer search and recovery groups from making searches for missing persons that would bring closure for the families. A video of his testimony can be seen by clicking the image below.

"Having thought about these issues as a former member of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department’s Search and Rescue Team, I introduced H.R. 2166, the Good Samaritan Search and Recovery Act.  This legislation requires the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Agriculture to expedite access to federal lands to allow for individuals or entities acting in a not-for-profit capacity to carry about privately requested, Good Samaritan search and recovery missions. "

Jodi Goldberg spoke about how not knowing what happened to her brother, Keith, affected her family and also encouraged members to support Rep. Heck's bill. A video of Ms. Goldberg's testimony can be seen by clicking the link below.

"Keith’s story is a tragic one and it is not over. We have a trial in 2014 and his remains have yet to be returned home.  But the one positive shining light, perhaps Keith’s legacy, is that if this legislation passes hopefully not another family will have to experience the prolonged pain and suffering ours did. "

This legislation was introduced following the discovery of the bodies of Keith Goldberg and Air Force Staff Sergeant Antonio Tucker in the Lake Mead Recreation Area by Good Samaritan search and rescue teams. In both cases, the volunteer search teams had to wait nearly one year to obtain the proper permits and insurance policies before conducting their searches. The Good Samaritan Search and Recovery Act will expedite that process and help bring closure for the families of missing persons.

###