Reps. Jeff Van Drew (D-NJ), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) and Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) announced new bipartisan legislation to fully fund the Land & Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). The U.S. Senate is considering similar legislation. Earlier this year, Congress permanently renewed LWCF when it passed the John D. Dingell, Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act, but that bill left funding for the program up to the annual appropriations process.
Statement by Erik DuMont, Public Lands Advocate for Environment America:
“There’s a simple reason the Land and Water Conservation Fund enjoys overwhelming support in Congress: it works. For more than a half-century, it has funded projects in national parks, wildlife refuges, and forests, as well as state and local parks, hiking trails and even Little League fields.
“A few months back, Congress permanently renewed the program with lopsided votes in the House and Senate.
“We love the fact that representatives from both parties are embracing conservation and prioritizing public lands. Now, we need to make sure the fund gets the money that it -- and the tens of millions of Americans who benefit from it -- deserves. The program is slated to receive $900 million per year, but for decades, without fail, that money has been diverted to other programs.
“Congress needs to pass these bills to finally, fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund.”
Environment America is a national network with affiliates in 29 states. Our staff and members work to protect the places we love, advance the environmental values we share, and win real results for our environment.