Posted on September 14 2018
Bipartisan bill moves to House and Senate for approval before September 30th deadline. Still needs congressional support for full funding.
Bozeman, MT: Yesterday, the House Natural Resources Committee, led by Chairman Rob Bishop (R-Utah) and Committee Ranking Member Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.), unanimously approved a bill to permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). Due to expire on September 30th, the bipartisan bill now moves to the House for approval before the deadline is reached. Additionally, the Committee passed H.R. 6510, a bipartisan bill that provides mandatory funding to address the critical infrastructure backlog on federal lands.
“AFFTA has long stood by the conservation, restoration, and protection of our public lands and waters,” says AFFTA president, Ben Bulis. “Our public lands, lakes rivers and parks afford each and every one of us the freedom and access to enjoy the uniquely American beauty of our wild and natural spaces, whether we fish, hunt, hike, camp, ride, or simply visit. We applaud these bipartisan efforts to ensure the protection of our outdoor heritage for generations to come. We urge House members to take up and pass both bills immediately.”
Known as one of the nation’s most important conservation programs, the LWCF has invested more than $16 billion into local communities in every state since it’s inception in 1964 for everything from public lands acquisitions to development of local public parks and waterway access. Authorized to receive $900 million annually, the program costs taxpayers nothing since it is completely funded by offshore drilling revenues. But it has only been fully funded twice in over 50 years.
H.R. 6510 would establish a fund to tackle the deferred maintenance backlog on National Parks and other federal lands by utilizing off- and on-shore federal energy development revenue not otherwise allocated for other purposes.
“We look forward to the swift passage of the permanent reauthorization of LWCF and urge our Congressional leaders to also fully—and permanently—fund the LWCF with the authorized dollars that are the lifeblood of the program’s success.”
AFFTA advocates for and promotes the sustained growth of the fly fishing industry. By igniting consumer demand for products and services, providing businesses the tools to be successful, and advocating for access, protection and restoration of fishing waters, we will continue to enhance the passion and profitability of the sport of fly fishing.