What’s Next for the Land & Water Conservation Fund?

Kates Branch, Randall Sanger

After achieving full, permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), through the passage of the Great American Outdoors Act, state and federal agencies are now preparing for additional financial resources to support conservation and recreation. To help ensure these funds have the greatest impact, we’re working with partners in the West Virginians for Public Lands alliance to review the guidance document for how these funds will be used.

Known as the SCORP, the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan goes into effect in April 2021. Through December 9, you can provide feedback on the draft SCORP.

With increased LWCF funding the new SCORP is more important than ever. The involvement of WV-based conservation groups and the public in reviewing the 2020-2025 draft SCORP document is essential for the inclusion of adequate conservation measures.

In early November, WV Rivers staff attended a public hearing on the SCORP and provided comments on 4 main areas we found the document lacking including: details on plans for community engagement, additional information on non-motorized trail development and maintenance, equity for underserved communities, and a greater focus on conservation measures.

If you are interested in providing feedback on the draft document, please contact John McGarrity at 304-558-2234 or john.r.mcgarrity@wv.gov. For more information, contact WV Rivers’ Campaign Coordinator, Sarah Cross, 304-695-6096 or scross@wvrivers.org.

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