Posts Tagged ‘LWCF’

Manchin, Gardner, Cantwell and Burr Lead Bipartisan Bill to Permanently Fund LWCF

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sam Runyon (Manchin) Sam_Runyon@energy.senate.gov 202-224-3907
Jerrod Dobkin (Gardner) Jerrod_Dobkin@gardner.senate.gov 202-228-5800
Bryan Watt (Cantwell) Bryan_Watt@cantwell.senate.gov 202-224-8277
Caitlin Carroll (Burr) Caitlin_Carroll@burr.senate.gov 202-228-1616

MANCHIN, GARDNER, CANTWELL AND BURR LEAD BIPARTISAN BILL TO PERMANENTLY FUND LWCF

Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act makes $900 million available each year 

Washington, DC – (April 9, 2019) Today, U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV), Ranking Member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, and Cory Gardner (R-CO) led a bipartisan group of Senators in introducing the Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act legislation to permanently fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at a level of $900 million. Manchin and Gardner were joined by Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Richard Burr (R-NC), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Jon Tester (D-MT), Steve Daines (R-MT), Tom Udall (D-NM), Susan Collins (R-ME), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Angus King (I-ME).

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund is responsible for the acquisition of some of West Virginia’s most treasured lands. The Gauley River National Recreation Area, Monongahela National Forest and Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge are just a few examples of areas that benefited from LWCF funds. With 54 of our 55 counties having received LWCF investments at some point, the benefits of LWCF can truly be felt across the Mountain State. I’m proud to lead this bipartisan bill that will finally fund LWCF at the intended levels so we can continue to preserve, protect and invest in our public lands,” Senator Manchin said.

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund is the crown jewel of conservation programs and now that we have successfully permanently authorized the program, the next step is to make the funding of the program automatic,” said Senator Gardner. “Colorado projects rely on LWCF funding and fighting year after year about how much money to provide the program does not provide the long-term planning certainty our outdoor and conservation communities deserve. This is a commonsense, bipartisan program that comes at no cost to the taxpayer, and it is time Congress fully and permanently funds this critical conservation program so future generations of Coloradans will have access to our great outdoors.”

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund is the preeminent tool to increase access to our nation’s beloved public lands. Now we need to build on our recent success to permanently extend the program by making sure the funding is mandatory and the program gets fully funded every year,” said Senator Cantwell. “The LWCF gives local communities the tools and resources needed to manage public lands, to provide more access to our lands and waters, and to do the things that will help us grow jobs and persevere against a very challenging and threatening climate.”

“From the Great Smoky Mountains to the Outer Banks, North Carolina’s parks and lands have benefited immensely from the Land and Water Conservation Fund,” Senator Burr said. “I am proud this popular and effective program has finally been made permanent, but we still have to make sure it has the resources necessary to carry out its important work. This bill permanently secures adequate funding for LWCF – without costing American taxpayers a dime.”

As part of the John D. Dingell, Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act, which was enacted into law last month (Public Law 116-9), Congress permanently authorized the LWCF. However, expenditures from the LWCF continue to be subject to federal appropriations. The Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act would remove the requirement that the LWCF funds must be appropriated. Instead for the first time, makes $900 million available each year without needing to be appropriated.

LWCF provides funding for additions to national parks, national wildlife refuges, national forests and other federal public lands used for outdoor recreation and habitat preservation. The LWCF also funds important projects that protect drinking water resources, sensitive habitat for fish and wildlife, and private forestland. The LWCF provides matching grants to states and localities for investments in outdoor recreation facilities, such as parks and ballfields, and helps protect threatened battlefield sites.

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund has connected millions of Americans with unrivaled outdoor experiences and conserved essential wildlife habitat across the nation for the past half century. Its permanent reauthorization was an important first step, but fully funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund is an essential next step to keep nature and wildlife within reach for future generations,” said Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “This bipartisan legislation deserves swift consideration and passage.”

“This is one of the smartest investments Congress can make,” said Whit Fosburgh, president and CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “The Land and Water Conservation Fund has made a lasting impact in every state in America, spurring increased access and more recreational opportunity. This legislation will send meaningful resources to ground that benefit hunters and anglers for generations to come.”

“We know that connecting with nature is linked to stronger communities and improved health, and the introduction of a bill that would fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund is terrific news,” said Diane Regas, President and CEO of The Trust for Public Land. “Full and dedicated funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund would mean more access to nature for more people in every state in our country. I want to thank Senators Manchin and Gardner for their strong support of this critical program.”

“We took a big leap toward securing LWCF’s future with the passage of S. 47, which permanently reauthorizes the program. Yet more work remains to be done – specifically ensuring LWCF’s full and dedicated funding. To that end, I want to thank Sen. Manchin for working in a bipartisan fashion and championing legislation that would fully dedicate funds to LWCF and guarantee funding for projects that increase hunting and fishing access on public lands and waters all across the country. Passage of this bill would take us across the finish line,” said Land Tawney, president and CEO, Backcountry Hunters & Anglers.

“In February, Congress made a promise to the American people: our country’s best conservation program is here to stay. Permanently reauthorizing the Land and Water Conservation Fund was a major win for the preservation of public lands across the country, ensuring that we will always have a critical tool for expanding national parks, protecting watersheds and creating new outdoor recreation opportunities for communities eager to get into the outdoors,” said Kameran Onley, director of U.S. Government Relations at The Nature Conservancy. “Today’s funding bill will fulfill the rest of that promise, ensuring LWCF will always have the full and dedicated funding it needs to continue conserving our treasured natural landscapes. We urge lawmakers to work together in the same bipartisan spirit that made permanent reauthorization a reality and do the same for funding for LWCF.”

To learn more about the Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act click here.

To read the legislation text in full click here.

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National Park Trust to Honor Senator Richard Burr (NC) with 2019 Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award

National Park Trust Logo

 

 

 

MEDIA STATEMENT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Samantha Jones, samantha@parktrust.org, 301-279-7275 x21

 

Washington, DC (March 18, 2019) – National Park Trust (NPT) is pleased to announce that Senator Richard Burr (NC) will receive the 19th Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award. The award will be presented to Senator Burr on Wednesday, June 12th at a reception at the Newseum in Washington, DC.

Senator Burr will be recognized for his outstanding efforts to support and advocate for the protection of our national parks, public lands and waters in his role as a member of the Senate Finance Committee and the Subcommittee on Energy, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure. He also chairs the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and serves on the Senate Committee of Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, and the Senate Aging Committee.

Senator Burr has been a leader in seeking permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund – a vision he shared with the award’s namesake, Congressman Bruce Vento. His sponsorship of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area Reauthorization Act demonstrates his continued commitment to protecting some of America’s most valuable ecological and historical resources.  

“It’s an honor to be recognized by National Park Trust, and I want to thank them for their support,” said Senator Burr. “I strongly believe it’s our responsibility to preserve America’s natural landscapes and parks, so our children and grandchildren can enjoy them as much as we have. North Carolina has over 19 million visitors to its National Park Service units each year, and organizations like National Park Trust work diligently with their federal partners to help make those lands accessible. I will continue fighting for common-sense conservation efforts as long as I serve in the Senate.”

“We are delighted to be able to honor Senator Richard Burr for his service in Washington, DC and at home in North Carolina to support bi-partisan legislation and programs that will not only preserve America’s national parks and public lands today, but also ensure that they will be treasured forever,” stated NPT Board Chair Bill Brownell.

NPT established the Vento Award in 2001 to honor the memory and legacy of Bruce F. Vento, a twelve-term Congressman from Minnesota, dedicated environmentalist and a champion of legislation for America’s parks. The award honors a public servant for his or her commitment to the environment, and their service, skill, and innovation in support of our public lands. Past recipients include Senator Martin Heinrich (NM), Senator Lamar Alexander (TN), Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN), Senator Rob Portman (OH), Senator Ron Wyden (OR), Congressman Mike Simpson (ID), Senator Mark Udall (CO), Senator Susan Collins (ME), Senator Jeff Bingaman (NM), Senator John McCain (AZ), Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (CA), Congressman George Miller (CA), and Senator Harry Reid (NV).

 

ABOUT NATIONAL PARK TRUST

National Park Trust (NPT) is a non-profit dedicated to preserving parks today and creating park stewards for tomorrow. NPT is the only land trust with a comprehensive mission of protecting national parks through land acquisition, and creating a pipeline of future park stewards by getting kids to parks. Since 1983, NPT has completed 70 land projects in 31 states, 1 US Territory, and Washington, DC. This school year, NPT will provide an estimated 25,000 under-served kids with park trips through their nationally recognized Buddy Bison Programs and Kids to Parks Day National School Contest, both of which support Title I schools. Find out more at www.parktrust.org.

 

All proceeds from the Vento Award event benefit NPT’s mission and programs.

 

 

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Natural Resources Management Act Signed Into Law

We are thrilled to hear that the President has signed the John D. Dingell, Jr.  Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act (S. 47) into law!

The law permanently reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and the Every Kid Outdoors Act (formerly the Every Kid in a Park program) for seven years. Collectively this legislation, originally known as the Natural Resource Management Act, will benefit thousands of parks, public lands, and waters as well as providing access to the outdoors to millions of 4th graders and their families.

The Land and Water Conservation Fund is America’s most important conservation program, responsible for protecting parks, wildlife refuges, and recreation areas at the federal, state, and local levels. Many of the lands that NPT has transferred to the National Park Service were purchased with funding from LWCF, including Rocky Mountain National Park, Washita Battlefield National Historic Site, Glacier National Park, Appalachian National Scenic Trail, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, and Zion National Park.

The Every Kid Outdoors Act will greatly support our youth program initiatives by providing all 4th graders with a park pass that gives them access to America’s public lands and waters. One third of our Buddy Bison School Program students and their families have benefited from this program.

Will you help NPT complete more parks and give park ecosystems and species a better chance at survival by making a gift today?

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Learn More:

  • NPT is part of the Land and Water Conservation Fund Coalition, take a look at their press release about the bill.
  • Read an op-ed by NPT Board Member, Richard Ring, on how the LWCF supports the outdoor economy.