WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Senate passed a public lands package today that permanently reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), a historically bipartisan program that has funded projects in all 50 states since its inception in 1965. The program, which expired last September, has supported everything from the expansion and maintenance of local parks and recreation centers to national forests, national parks and historical sites.
Environment America’s Public Lands Campaign Director Erik DuMont issued the following statement:
“Our country’s most successful conservation and recreation program has been on life support since it expired in September. Thankfully we’re seeing movement on this now, and we applaud the Senate for getting the job done and not letting it fall through the cracks. Still, more needs to be done. Since LWCF funding expired, public lands projects have missed out on more than $300 million in revenue. While the Senate bill that passed today permanently renews the program, it does not fully fund it at the $900 million a year authorized in the original LWCF bill. To maintain America the Beautiful, we need to protect our public lands. The Senate took a big step toward doing. Now the House must act. We’re confident it will, but not so confident that we’ll stop pushing until the program is reauthorized with full funding.”
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Environment America is the national federation of statewide, citizen-based advocacy organizations working for a cleaner, greener, healthier future.
For a list of projects funded by LWCF, go to https://www.lwcfcoalition.com/.