U.S. Senate passes huge public lands package, saves LWCF
The U.S. Senate passed Tuesday the most sweeping federal public lands legislation in a decade with the Natural Resources Management Act, which will designate 1.3 million acres of public land in the West as wilderness, as well as permanently reauthorize the very popular Land and Water Conservation Fund.
The 662-page bill passed the Senate by a 92-8 vote, with lawmakers on both sides able to tout home state triumphs. That includes Sen. Cory Gardner, who was under pressure from constituents to get his fellow Republicans to back reauthorization of the LWCF, which provides grants to local communities for environmental protection and outdoor recreational improvements. The package has several Colorado-specific provisions, including the Arapaho National Forest Boundary Adjustment (WEDGE Act) and Bolts Ditch Access and Use Act.
The U.S. House, which is also expected to pass the Management Act handily, will vote on the bill next month, with indication that President Trump will be willing to sign it into law.
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