Schumer: New Energy Bill Could Help New York’s State Parks
Published: August 3rd, 2010
By: Melissa Stagnaro

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Full funding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund could be the answer to the financial woes of New York’s State Parks, according to Senator Charles Schumer.

The New York Democrat said last week he is pushing for the LWCF to be funded fully at $900 million as part of the New Energy Bill. Established in 1965, the LWCF’s purpose is to promote the acquisition and development of outdoor recreation areas, such as state parks. It is funded by royalties from offshore oil and gas drilling activities.

“These dollars, already being collected by oil and gas drilling companies, have hardly been used for their intended purpose and should be spent on parks and outdoor recreation as Congress intended.” said Schumer.

According to the senator, the fund has only been fully funded twice in its 40-plus year history. During those times, he said, New York’s share was approximately $24 million, an amount he feels could go a long way toward saving the parks and historical sites which narrowly escaped closure this year.

Hunts Pond and Oquaga Creek were two of the 41 state parks and 14 historical sites which received a last-minute reprieve by the Governor David Paterson right before Memorial Day.

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