WASHINGTON (KTVZ) — Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., this week joined a bipartisan group of their colleagues to introduce landmark legislation to permanently and fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund and address the nearly $12 billion maintenance backlog in our national parks and other land management agencies.
Thanks to the broad bipartisan coalition supporting the Great American Outdoors Act the bill is expected to get White House approval, if passed.
“LWCF is America’s most important conservation program, working at the federal, state and local levels to protect some of Oregon’s most treasured places so they can be enjoyed for generations to come,” said Wyden, a senior member of the U.S. Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
“For years, I and other Democrats have paved the way to secure permanent and full funding for this program only to have Republicans block us, over and over. This bipartisan movement is long overdue, and I hope for the sake of our natural places and parks – so loved by the American people – that Trump and Senate Republicans keep their word and finally allow this funding to get across the finish line.”
“From our shores, rivers, and lakes to our forests, grasslands, and high desert—Oregon’s incredible lands and waters have made countless contributions to the economy and spirit of our state,” said Merkley. “That’s why it couldn’t be more important that we protect and maintain those natural treasures. This bill is integral to that effort, so we can make sure future generations of Oregonians can enjoy the public lands and national parks that make Oregon so special.”