Slider
Slider

|

Slider

Kilili: US House passes permanent increase in conservation funding; parks maintenance addressed

Local
Typography
  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Office of the CNMI Congressional Delegate) — A multi-year effort to increase the Land and Water Conservation Fund annual grant to the Marianas is one presidential signature away from completion. The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Great American Outdoors Act providing a permanent source of funding for the LWCF. It means about $800,000 annually for the Marianas. The money can be used for public parks, playgrounds, sports fields, and beach recreation areas.

The Great American Outdoors Act also addresses long-overdue maintenance needs at parks managed by the National Park Service, including the American Memorial Park on Saipan. Over the next five years, $9.5 billion will be allocated for repairs at facilities run by the Park Service. American Memorial Park is on the agency’s list for $10.6 million in repairs.

Last year, U.S. Congressman Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan, the delegates from the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the resident commissioner from Puerto Rico all successfully worked together to include a provision in the John J. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management and Recreation Act to give each of their insular areas its own state-share of Land and Water Conservation Fund annual funding. Up to then the six areas split one state-share.

The permanent change in how funds were allocated increased the Marianas’ annual grant from $75,000 to upwards of $800,000.

But the source of money for the Land and Water Conservation Fund was not permanent.

The Great American Outdoors Act ends the uncertainty by locking in full funding of $900 million annually for the LWCF from oil and gas revenues on federal lands and waters.

This means the Marianas state-share will now remain relatively constant at $800,000 each year.

The John Dingell Act also made permanent and expanded the Every Kid in a Park Program, which provides a one-year, free pass to national parks, national forests, and national wildlife refuges for fourth-grade students and their families. Some 800 fourth graders in the Marianas have used the program to visit American Memorial Park.

Shadow
Slider
previous arrow
next arrow
Shadow
Slider

Read more articles

Visit our Facebook Page

previous arrow
next arrow
Shadow
Slider