Yesterday, July 6, Congressman Don Young (R-AK) and Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI) introduced the bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (HR 5650). The legislation calls for annually dedicating $1.3 billion in existing revenue from the development of energy and mineral resources on federal lands and waters to proactive fish and wildlife conservation. The bill was prompted by the recommendation of the Blue Ribbon Panel on Sustaining America’s Diverse Fish and Wildlife Resources. The Panel released its recommendations in March 2016 at the National Press Club as part of the Teaming With Wildlife Fly-in.
The Young-Dingell bill proposes to invest new funding in the Wildlife Conservation Restoration program that was created in 2000 through the advocacy of the Teaming With Wildlife coalition. The program, which is part of the successful Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program, is designed to address the conservation needs of species that are not hunted or fished, including over 12,000 species identified in State Wildlife Action Plans as Species in Greatest Conservation Need. The program can also be used to support conservation education and wildlife-dependent recreation programs.
In the days ahead, members of the coalition will be launching a co-sponsor drive to secure bipartisan support for the bill and will be working with the Senate to introduce companion legislation. The Congressional Sportsman’s Caucus and National Wildlife Federation, both members of the Teaming With Wildlife coalition played key roles in advancing House legislation. Watch for future updates on this important legislation and help spread the word by forwarding this update and using the hashtag #Funding4Wildlife on social media.
Teaming with Wildlife is a coalition of over 6,400 organizations supporting