Help Protect Federal Funding for Special Outdoor Places

Early in March, President Trump’s nomination for Interior Secretary, Congressman Ryan Zinke was confirmed. Tom Cors, the Director of Government Relations for Lands at The Nature Conservancy and a co-chair of the Land and Water Conservation Fund Coalition (LWCF), praised the selection, siting “Congressman Zinke has distinguished himself with his strong commitment to keeping public lands public, his forceful advocacy for LWCF funding, and his passionate activism on behalf of Montana sportsmen and women. His reputation as a champion for critical conservation and outdoor recreation issues is well-deserved and his leadership will be essential as key conservation issues, including reauthorization and robust funding for LWCF, are considered.”

The fund is the nation’s primary tool to conserve parks, wildlife refuges, forests, rivers, trails, historic and cultural sites, urban parks and playgrounds and other important federal, state and local public lands. The fund uses no taxpayer dollars. Instead, funds for LWCF come from a small portion of offshore oil and gas leasing revenues that are set aside each year to support conservation and recreation projects. Congress has routinely diverted LWCF funds for other uses.

Earlier in January, Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Natural Resources, and Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-PA) introduced H.R.502 to permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). This reauthorization bill comes at a critical time as the LWCF is set to expire on September 30, 2018. Recently, rumors have been swirling that the program’s funding could get drastically cut or even eliminated entirely in the next budget. Another possibility is that opponents will legislate damaging changes to the LWCF program through the budget process.

The LWCF can use your help! Please look at the documents listed below for more information on how to bring attention to the LWCF:

PTNY is a member of The LWCF Coalition, a broad-based coalition of hundreds of conservation, recreation, business, and sportsmen’s groups working together to support the LWCF program in order to meet America’s conservation and recreation needs in the 21st century. Learn more.