The Senate funds the great outdoors, passing the Great American Outdoors Act, which passed in a 73-25 vote, would permanently provide $900 million in oil and gas revenues for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), which helps secure land for trails and parks.
The legislation will also put $6.5 billion toward addressing a maintenance backlog at national parks.
This is great news! Next to the house and then hopefully to the President’s desk. A piece of bi-partisan legislation to restore funding to the outdoors. The LWCF supports many outdoor projects at various levels, including purchasing land for trails. The funding for the NPS will fill many years of underspending on maintenance that has left a considerable backlog.
“Permanent LWCF funding will help improve access to public lands, including providing important access for hunting and fishing opportunities, and will ensure the program remains an important contributor to a strong and growing outdoor recreation economy that will benefit state and local economies throughout our nation,” Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.)
“We are delighted to see the Senate pass the Great American Outdoors Act,” said Adam Cramer, Executive Director of Outdoor Alliance. “It is a landmark moment for the outdoors and underscores the bipartisan popularity and importance of protecting our public lands and waters. This is a perfect time to guarantee that all Americans, in our wonderful diversity, can have access to the outdoors. The Great American Outdoors Act will help make this happen by funding maintenance and restoration of the country’s iconic public lands and waters, and investing in building new trails, parks, and green spaces in perpetuity.”
Key areas of the NPS and NFS have been underfunded for many years. Even though this is a positive step, it looks like the source of the funding is derived from fossil fuel and mining exploiting federal lands.