"I have been lucky enough to make a career of facilitating outdoor recreation, primarily as a fly fishing guide. As a guide, water quality and overall quality of the environment is of paramount importance. Trout is the species of fish that we target most often, and trout require the cleanest and coldest water to thrive. Therefore, if the quality of the environment decreases, my profession and salary will decrease as well. I support full funding of the LWCF to ensure continued protection of the environment around sensitive trout streams and across North Carolina."

- Tim Holcomb, forester
Western North Carolina,
Fishing Guide

 
 

 

 

LWCF_logoLWCFCoalition.org

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 5, 2015

CONTACT: Justin Bartolomeo

202-789-4365

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Bishop Proposal Would Roll Back 50 years of Conservation and Recreation

 

Washington, DC – Alan Rowsome, co-Chair of the Land and Water Conservation Fund Coalition, issued the following statement following release today of House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop’s draft legislation to reauthorize and change the LWCF program:

 

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund Coalition rejects the Bishop proposal, which as written would undermine the integrity of America’s most successful and necessary conservation program. For 50 years, the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) has kept a simple promise to the American people: when we allow offshore drilling for oil and gas that belongs to all of us, we set aside a small portion of the proceeds to protect America’s greatest places and ensure outdoor recreation opportunities for all, from local parks to national parks.  This proposal would break that link, deny Americans the chance to protect the places they love, and further divert scarce conservation resources to unrelated purposes.

 

“Unlike numerous other proposals to reauthorize and fund LWCF – including broadly supported bipartisan legislation in the House, and a permanent reauthorization bill approved by the Senate Energy Committee just a few months ago – this proposed legislation would do irreparable harm to our National Parks from Acadia and Gettysburg to Grand Teton as well as to important regional landscapes like the Chesapeake Bay and the High Divide, portions of the national trails system, wildlife and sportsmen’s access, sacred Civil War battlefields and other irreplaceable historic sites, and America’s working forests and farms. By placing unreasonable and unnecessary limits on efforts to protect these resources, the Bishop proposal will undercut communities, landowners, hunters and anglers, outdoor recreation enthusiasts, local businesses and many others working across America to safeguard our National Parks, trails, battlefields, beaches, lakes, forests, refuges and many other public lands.   

 

“The proposal will also undercut the vibrant $646 billion outdoor recreation economy, especially in the West, where residents, visitors and businesses count on LWCF to provide access for a variety of activities that generate billions in related local spending and create millions of jobs.

 

“LWCF has overwhelming bipartisan support in Congress because it is a flexible program that already works for communities across America, with dedicated conservation funding that protects vital resources; boosts local economies; and reduces management inefficiencies and costs. We urge Congress to expeditiously reauthorize and fully fund LWCF without harmful changes and look forward to working with the broad array of bipartisan supporters in both chambers who support LWCF as is to continue to protect the places that the American people value.”

 

 

 

About the Land and Water Conservation Fund

The Land and Water Conservation Fund is America’s most important conservation program, responsible for protecting parks, wildlife refuges and recreation areas at the federal, state and local level.  For 50 years, it has provided critical funding for land and water conservation projects, recreational construction and activities and the continued historic preservation our nation’s iconic landmarks from coast-to-coast.   

 

LWCF does not use any taxpayer dollars – it is funded using a small portion of revenues from offshore oil and gas royalty payments.  Outdoor recreation, conservation and historic preservation activities contribute more than a trillion dollars annually to the U.S. economy, supporting 9.4 million jobs.  LWCF benefits every state in the nation.  Its many accomplishments include:

 

·         Protecting more than 100 national battlefields in 42 states

·         Supporting more than 40,000 parks and recreation projects in every state and nearly every county

·         Protecting 2.2 million acres (1.7 million football fields) within our  National Parks

 

About the LWCF Coalition

The LWCF Coalition is the umbrella group of more than 1,000 state and local land owners, small businesses, ranchers, sportsmen, veterans, outdoor recreationists and conservation organizations working to protect America’s public lands and safeguard our shared outdoor heritage for future generations.

 

The Coalition is united in its advocacy for the reauthorization and full funding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which will ensure the continued conservation of our national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, wilderness, civil war battlefields, as well as state and local parks.

 

For more information on LWCF and the places in each state that have been protected using LWCF funds, visit www.lwcfcoalition.orgor @ LWCFCoalition.