U.S. House of Representatives passes Great American Outdoors Act
The Conservation Federation of Missouri commends the U.S. House of Representatives for its overwhelming support of the Great American Outdoors Act. The bill will permanently fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and provide money for deferred maintenance projects at national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and other public lands.
“This is an incredible win for wildlife, public lands and waters, and for all Missouri families who enjoy hiking, camping, fishing, hunting or otherwise exploring Missouri’s cherished forests and wildlife areas,” said Tyler Schwartze, Executive Director of the Conservation Federation of Missouri. “The Great American Outdoors Act will expand recreation opportunities, open up additional hunting and fishing access points, boost our outdoor recreation economy, and create good-paying jobs.”
“Passing the Great American Outdoors Act is quite simply the most significant investment in conservation in decades. It’s a huge win for wildlife, our natural treasures, our economy, and all Americans, who enjoy our America’s public lands for solace, recreation, and exercise, especially amid this pandemic,” said Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “The Great American Outdoors Act shows us once again that investing in our public lands and waters is a rare issue that transcends partisan politics. All Americans will benefit from this historic legislation, which will create hundreds of thousands of jobs, expand outdoor recreation opportunities in every community, and accelerate our nation’s economic recovery from COVID-19.”
The Land and Water Conservation Fund has created and maintained local, state and national parks, hiking and biking trails, waterfront access and much more for over five decades. Last year Congress permanently reauthorized this successful conservation program. The Great American Outdoors Act provides full and permanent funding for it. Over the years, Missouri has received over $146 million dollars from LWCF to maintain such places as the Ozark National Scenic River and the Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge. The fund also helps fuel our vibrant outdoor recreation economy which generates $14.9 billion in consumer spending every year and supports 133,000 jobs in Missouri.
For more information about the Conservation Federation of Missouri or to join in their citizen-led effort, visit www.confemdo.org.
Photo by the Missouri Department of Conservation.