Congress sends sportsmen’s access, habitat conservation package to the President
By Chris Eger
A conservation and sportsmen’s bill that met with support across both aisles of Congress and the endorsement of pro-hunting groups is headed to President Trump (Photo: Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation)
A voluminous measure of land and outdoor recreation reforms met final approval on Capitol Hill on Tuesday and is headed to President Trump’s desk.
The 600-page Natural Resources Management Act, S.47, contains over 100 provisions, many of which have been floating around Congress for the better part of a decade. The bipartisan proposal passed the Senate 92-8 earlier in February before getting a 363-62 nod in the House this week.
The bill includes directives to open many tracts of public land across the nation — potentially 10 million acres — that are currently off-limits due to access reasons, a move that will increase opportunities for hunting, fishing, public shooting ranges, and other activities. According to the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, a dearth of access to hunting lands is one of the main reasons hunters stop participating in the sport.
Other tenets of the package would expand invasive species control efforts, protect and conserve millions of acres of watershed and wilderness, and assist private landowners who want to voluntarily restore natural habitat on their lands. It also