WASHINGTON—Will Shafroth, President and CEO of the National Park Foundation, the official nonprofit partner to the National Park Service, provided the following statement following Senate passage of the S.3422, the Great American Outdoors Act:
“The Great American Outdoors Act represents a once in a lifetime opportunity, years in the making, to invest in our most treasured spaces, ensure national parks remain safe and accessible, and provide inspiration and education for generations to come.
After years of bipartisan efforts to tackle the National Park Service’s staggering deferred maintenance needs, the National Park Foundation commends this historic, bipartisan vote in the Senate. We are one crucial step closer to getting this major win for parks across the finish line.
The Great American Outdoors Act provides much needed funding to repair and enhance national park facilities, roads, water systems, trails, and other resources that are essential to the visitor experience. By enacting permanent, mandatory funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, this significant legislation will protect precious lands within our national parks while increasing outdoor recreation opportunities in communities across the United States.
Through its investments in our iconic landscapes, hallowed battlefields, and important historical and cultural sites, the Great American Outdoors Act furthers the Foundation’s mission to enrich and enhance national parks through philanthropic support.
The Great American Outdoors Act was introduced and shepherded through the Senate by Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO), Angus King (I-ME), Steve Daines (R-MT), Rob Portman (R-OH), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Mark Warner (D-VA), and Joe Manchin (D-WV), among others. Their collective leadership on behalf of our parks was critical in moving this legislation forward.
The Foundation applauds Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) for bringing the Great American Outdoors Act to the floor and thanks every Senator who voted to pass this outstanding conservation legislation.”
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help protect more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts and connect all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture, and rich history. Find out more and become a part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.