Great American Outdoors Act To Permanently Fund The Land and Water
Conservation Fund Passed Senate Today With Bipartisan Support
U.S. Congressman Brian Mast (FL-18), a cosponsor of the bipartisan Great American Outdoors Act, today called on Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to bring the House of Representatives back into session to pass the Great American Outdoors Act as soon as possible. The bill passed the Senate today by a bipartisan vote of 73 to 25. The Great American Outdoors Act makes funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) permanent, as well as addresses the nearly $22 billion backlog of deferred maintenance projects on federal lands.
“Each year, our economy is driven by the millions of people who visit Florida to enjoy the outdoors, and more than that, our entire way of life is tied to preserving public land and protecting our environment,” Rep. Mast said. “This legislation builds on the progress we made last year to permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund by making its funding permanent. The Great American Outdoors Act is a big step toward ensuring that our local water resources and public lands – including the Everglades – will be protected and preserved for generations to come. Speaker Pelosi should immediately call the House back into session so we can pass this critical bill ASAP!”
Florida’s outdoor experience is the very cornerstone of the economy and quality of life for 20 million residents, supporting a $58 billion industry and 485,000 direct jobs. Over the last 50 years, the Land and Water Conservation Fund has invested more than $1 billion across Florida to conserve fish and wildlife habitat, and enhance public hunting and fishing access. The program makes it possible to leverage local resources, address maintenance backlogs, build marinas, youth athletic fields or playgrounds, and protect multi-billion restoration investments in America’s Everglades. Rep. Mast has been a strong advocate for the program, including cosponsoring the Land and Water Conservation Fund Reauthorization and Fairness Act, as well as supporting the Natural Resources Management Act to permanently reauthorize the program.
The legislation can be found here.