The Great American Outdoors Act
On Tuesday, August 4th, President Trump signed into law The Great American Outdoors Act.
This bill establishes the National Parks and Public Land Legacy Restoration Fund, which will provide financial support towards deferred maintenance projects on federal lands. The bill, with bipartisan support, is a massive win for conservationists.
The bill will provide permanent funding the Land and Water Conservation fund at $900 million per year, and will provide $9.5 billion over the next five years to our national parks.
“We’re here today to celebrate the passage of truly landmark legislation that will preserve America’s majestic natural wonders, priceless historic treasures — and that’s exactly what they are — grand national monuments, and glorious national parks. This is a very big deal. And from an environmental standpoint and from just the beauty of our country standpoint, there hasn’t been anything like this since Teddy Roosevelt […] President Roosevelt understood that our nation’s untamed spirit of adventure, exploration, and discovery is kindled in the great outdoors.”
The Trump Administration worked with Congress to secure the passage of this landmark conservation legislation, which will use revenues from energy development to provide up to $1.9 billion a year for five years in the National Parks and Public Land Legacy Restoration Fund.
“The Great American Outdoors Act provides $900 million a year in guaranteed funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund so that all Americans can continue to enjoy our parks, wildlife refuges. The bill provides nearly $10 billion for long-delayed maintenance projects, repairs, and upgrades” -President Trump
The NPS, BLM, and Fish and Wildlife Services are greatly overdue for maintenance and this will supply funding for critical facilities and infrastructure in our national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, recreation areas and American Indian schools. It will also use royalties from offshore oil and natural gas to permanently fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund to the tune of $900 million a year to invest in conservation and recreation opportunities across the country.
Secretary Bernhardt also announced that August 4th will be designated “Great American Outdoors Day,” a fee-free day each year moving forward to commemorate the signing of the Act. Entrance fees will be waived at all fee collecting public lands at the National Park Service (NPS), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service).
What parks have you visited? Which ones are you planning on visiting next?