March 09, 2020

Manchin Leads Bipartisan Group To Introduce The Great American Outdoors Act

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) today with his bipartisan colleagues introduced the Great American Outdoors Act, landmark legislation to preserve and protect our country’s public lands. The bipartisan legislation provides permanent and full funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and addresses the nearly $12 billion maintenance backlog in our national parks and other land management agencies. Last week, President Trump announced his support for this legislation and called on Congress to send it to his desk. The Great American Outdoors Act was also introduced by Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO), Steve Daines (R-MT), Rob Portman (R-OH), Mark Warner (D-VA), Angus King (I-ME), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Richard Burr (R-NC).

“I started working to secure permanent funding the day after we passed permanent authorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund last year. I am excited to see there is such broad bipartisan support to secure full, permanent funding for LWCF and address the maintenance backlog across all of our national parks and treasured public lands. Every state and territory and nearly every county in our country has benefited from LWCF funding. Today I am proud to be the lead Democrat introducing the Great American Outdoors Act. This is an historic achievement for conservation and a testament to the strong, bipartisan work that is still possible when we put politics aside to do what is best for our country,” said Senator Manchin.

To read the legislation in full, please click here.

Manchin is a champion for the Land and Water Conservation Fund in the U.S. Senate:

  • Senator Manchin held a bipartisan press conference in March 2020 announcing and applauding President Trump’s support for bipartisan legislation to provide full and permanent funding for the LWCF and address the $12 billion maintenance backlog in our national parks.
  • In 2019, Manchin led the fight to pass and have signed into law by the President S. 47, the John D. Dingell, Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act, which included a Manchin-sponsored bill to permanently reauthorize the LWCF.
  • The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources passed S. 1081, the bipartisan Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act in November 2019, a bill introduced by Ranking Member Manchin that would make the full funding of LWCF mandatory every fiscal year.
  • In September 2019, Senator Manchin led his bipartisan colleagues in calling on Congressional leadership to fully and permanently fund LWCF.
  • In February 2019, the Senate passed Senator Manchin’s legislation to permanently reauthorize LWCF in the Natural Resources Management Act.
  • In October 2018, Senator Manchin’s legislation, the Land and Water Conservation Authorization and Funding Act (S. 569), which would make the LWCF authorization permanent, was passed by the Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
  • In August 2018, Senator Manchin led a letter to Senate leadership advocating for the permanent reauthorization of LWCF.
  • In 2017, Senator Manchin supported the introduction of the Energy and Natural Resources Act of 2017 which included permanent reauthorization for LWCF.
  • In April 2016, Senator Manchin supported the Senate passage of the Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2015 which permanently reauthorized LWCF.
  • In 2015, Senator Manchin cosponsored the Sportsmen’s Act of 2015 which permanently reauthorized LWCF.