U.S. House passes historic conservation bill
The Great American Outdoors Act – which Upton cosponsored – now advances to the President’s desk
Washington, July 22, 2020 | Josh Paciorek (202-225-3761)
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Fred Upton (R-St. Joseph) voted for and the U.S. House of Representatives passed the bipartisan Great American Outdoors Act – which Upton cosponsored – and it now heads to the President’s desk for his signature.
This landmark conservation bill would help ensure public lands are preserved and protected by providing full, permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at a level of $900 million every year and address the approximately $20 billion maintenance backlog on federal public lands. The legislation would take royalties from oil and gas drilling on public lands and use them to offset the national park maintenance backlog.
“As all of us know, southwest Michigan is home to some of the most beautiful outdoor recreation spots in the entire world. It’s our job to protect them for the next generation,” Upton said. “The passage of the Great American Outdoors Act is a major victory for our public lands, the state of Michigan, and the American people. The maintenance on our national parks has been pretty dismal – this bill will change that, and I am certainly thrilled to see it move one step closer to becoming law.”
The Great American Outdoors Act was originally introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Angus King (I-ME), Susan Collins (R-ME), and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), and it passed the Senate 73-25. Upton’s House Problem Solvers Caucus endorsed the bill earlier this month. President Trump has signaled he will sign the legislation.