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February 12, 2019 (Washington, DC) - The Senate approved the Natural Resources Management Act (S. 47), which contains many longstanding priorities advocated by the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation (CSF), on a bipartisan vote of 92 - 8.

Introduced by Energy and Natural Resources (ENR) Committee Chair and Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus (CSC) Member Senator Lisa Murkowski (AK) along with Senator Maria Cantwell (WA), this comprehensive package of legislation includes numerous provisions that will improve access for sportsmen and women and will provide resources for habitat conservation programs. Following introduction in January, nearly 50 organizations submitted a support letter urging Senate Leadership to consider S. 47. Some of the priority sporting provisions in this bill include:

Authorizing the transportation of archery equipment through National Park Service (NPS) Units.

Directing Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Forest Service (USFS) lands to be open for hunting, fishing, and recreational shooting unless specifically closed.

Directing the NPS, BLM, USFS, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to annually identify lands where sporting related activities are permitted, but where access is currently unavailable or restricted.

Permanent reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund with 3% or $15 million of annual appropriations made available for the purpose of securing additional access for hunting, fishing, recreational shooting, and other outdoor related activities.

"The Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation applauds the Senate Leadership for bringing this important legislation for sportsmen and women to the floor for a vote," said CSF President Jeff Crane. "This is common sense legislation that is the result of years of negotiations with Congressional champions to get to this point, and CSF will work with the House of Representatives to pass this legislation and get it signed into law."

Sen. Murkowski provided a statement on the Senate floor. "This package contains huge wins for Americans." She continued, "It also expands and enhances access for our sportsmen and women on federal lands for hunting, fishing, and other outdoor activities."

During his floor speech, Ranking Member of the ENR Committee and CSC Vice-Chair Senator Joe Manchin said, "This package enjoys the support of numerous stakeholder organizations across the political spectrum. For example, the National Wildlife Federation and the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation are two of its strongest and most dedicated advocates; and I thank them for their support."

He continued, "The Natural Resources Management Act will enhance and expand sportsmen's access by making federal lands in West Virginia and throughout the nation open unless closed for fishing, hunting, recreational shooting, and other outdoor activities. As a hunter myself, and as Vice-Chair of the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus, I know how frustrated sportsmen's groups have been trying to get their bills passed the last few years."
 

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I hear a big "But..." somewhere in here.
 

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I hear a big "But..." somewhere in here.
I've been looking but haven't found a landmine "but" yet....it is only 662 pages long.
Not sure why Toomey voted against it?

Here is a good article that provides the best summary I have found:
Only 8 Senators opposed sweeping conservation bill and Oklahoma?s Senators were 2 of them ? Oklahoma Energy Today
I personally wish the Desolation canyon section of the green river in Utah would have received more protections, but it did get some. Desolation canyon is one of the most special places in the lower 48 IMHO.

So the cynical political side of me is sensing irony from my understanding of some of the events of last few years:

1st Obama in his last days passed "Bears Ears" national monument and other designations that were fraught with controversy. Trump overturned it partially and was met with opposition:
https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/president-trump-disarms-the-bears-ears-bomb-obama-left-behind-for-him
2cd Then Trump orders audit of national land:
https://www.foxnews.com/politics/interior-tags-27-designated-monuments-for-review-days-after-trump-orders-audit-of-land-grab
3rd And now cobbled together is a mass conglomeration of conservation wants from all over the US and now Trump is expected to sign the Natural Resources Management Act..........the biggest environmental bill in 10 years!
https://weather.com/science/environment/news/2019-02-13-senate-passes-public-lands-package-national-monuments

Read the bill:
https://www.congress.gov/116/bills/s47/BILLS-116s47pcs.pdf

Time will tell if this bill gets to Trump's desk. I personally hope it does as I haven't seen anything YET that ticked me off. Who knows how the house will amend this thing.

EDIT: here is a BUT.....
land giveaway to native americans (or heirs)who were in Vieatnam war after 1971 and "missed" last land giveaway? up to 448,00 acres?
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/02/13/big-alaskan-land-giveaway-tucked-into-sweeping-conservation-bill/?utm_term=.3dc3e3a7b3ef
 

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signed into law 2 weeks ago. Funny, didn't hear much (nothing) about trump signing the largest conservation bill in over 10 years......
 
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