WASHINGTON, DC — Earlier today, the US Senate held a cloture vote to advance the Great American Outdoors Act just days after the legislation was also introduced in the US House of Representatives. The Great American Outdoors Act would fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund, a popular program that invests in public lands across the country. LWCF would improve access points, expand trails and services, and great new parks and outdoor greenspaces at no cost to US taxpayers. The Great American Outdoors Act would also provide billions to close the maintenance gap in America’s National Parks.
In reaction to the announcement, Phil Francis, chair of the coalition to project America’s National Parks, issued the following statement:
“Passage of the Great American Outdoors Act, which includes full and permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund and provisions to address the backlog of deferred maintenance in our national parks, is long overdue, and we welcome its progress in Congress. As life-long stewards of our national parks, we know what a difference this funding can make on the ground, and how needed it is now more than ever.
“Permanent and full funding for LWCF is the necessary next step to fulfill this program’s promise to the American people; to preserve nationally significant public lands and provide recreational opportunities in communities across the country. Addressing the crippling $12 billion deferred maintenance backlog at our national parks is critical to the continued protection and preservation of our treasured natural and cultural resources.
“We celebrate this progress, but we know that our work is not yet done. We must continue to be strong and vocal advocates for our national parks, and we urge Congress to push hard to advance this bill over the finish line.”
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