WASHINGTON D.C.— Today, U.S. Senators Tom Udall, top Democrat on the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, and Martin Heinrich, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, announced that the Department of the Interior (DOI) is providing more than $1.1 million in grants to the state of New Mexico for outdoor recreation and conservation projects through the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). The funds are awarded through a federal matching program that leverages state and local funds by matching the investment with federal funds in New Mexico.
“The Land and Water Conservation Fund helps fuel thousands of jobs in New Mexico and an $887 billion outdoor recreation industry nationwide – at no cost to the taxpayer,” Udall said. “These grants will help provide more parkland and open spaces for our kids to play in. LWCF is critical to preserving and conserving our public lands for all New Mexicans and Americans to enjoy, energizing our state’s economy along the way. As the ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee that oversees funding for the Interior Department, I have proudly fought for strong funding for the LWCF, and I will continue working for a bipartisan solution to permanently authorize and fully fund the LWCF, one of our nation’s most successful conservation programs.”
“The Land and Water Conservation Fund is one of our nation’s most important conservation programs. Over the last half century, the LWCF has protected some of our most treasured public lands like Ute Mountain and the Valles Caldera, while fueling our thriving outdoor recreation economy,” Heinrich said. “Through its grants to states, the LWCF also helps New Mexico communities expand opportunities for outdoor traditions like hunting, camping, and fishing. I will continue to fight for permanent reauthorization and full funding for this incredibly successful program so we can keep preserving our outdoor heritage and protecting public lands for future generations to enjoy.”
In total, New Mexico will receive $1,103,088 through the LWCF State and Local Assistance Grants, which have helped create and protect urban parks and open spaces that enhance recreation and outdoor opportunities in urban and rural communities alike. The LWCF is funded through revenues from federal oil and gas leases on the Outer Continental Shelf and does not use taxpayer dollars. The program also supports America's outdoor recreation, conservation and preservation economies.