WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Senate passed the bipartisan Natural Resources Management Act, which includes a provision U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) helped secure to permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) after it lapsed in September. The package now awaits final House passage and will then head to the President’s desk to be signed into law.
Reauthorizing these funds will ensure LWCF can continue the acquisition and development of lands for State Parks, national parks, national forests and other public lands across the state and nation. The package also includes a measure that will give state and federal lands at least 40 percent of expenditures from the fund and requires a specific allocation for projects that improve access to isolated or inaccessible recreation areas.
“Ohioans depend on access to public lands for outdoor recreation, healthy living, community events and local economies,” said Brown. “Permanently funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund will ensure they can continue to do these activities, while protecting our natural resources for future generations.”
LWCF has supported Ohio sites like the following:
- Cuyahoga Valley National Park
- Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park
- Hopewell Culture National Historical Park
- James A Garfield National Historic Site
- Little Beaver Creek Wild and Scenic River
- Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge
- Perry's Victory & International Peace Memorial
- Wayne National Forest
- Vinton Furnace Experimental Forest
- Chestnut Hills Trailhead in Portage County
- The City of Toronto War Memorial
- Middle Bass island in Ottawa County
Brown has been fighting to permanently reauthorize funds for the LWCF program. In 2017, Brown co-sponsored the Land and Water Conservation Authorization and Funding Act, which was a standalone bill that would have permanently reauthorized LWCF and removed it from the appropriations process.