Policy Update Feb 16, 2022

NPCA Position on H.R. 3540, H.R. 4677, & H.R. 5973

NPCA shared positions on H.R. 3540, H.R. 4677, and H.R. 5973 ahead of a legislative markup held by the House Natural Resources Committee scheduled for February 16, 2022.

H.R. 3540 – Chesapeake Bay Science, Education, and Ecosystem Enhancement Act of 2021: NPCA supports this legislation which would reauthorize the Chesapeake Bay Office of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration through fiscal year 2025. This bill reauthorizes NOAA’s role in the Chesapeake Executive Council and the Chesapeake Bay Agreement that work to restore and protect the Chesapeake Bay watershed and its 54 national park sites. This legislation supports NOAA’s participation in the implementation of the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail and the creation of a watershed education and training program. The bill also creates a grant program that funds education and restoration programs throughout the Bay and its tributaries.

H.R. 4677 - New York-New Jersey Watershed Protection Act: NPCA supports this legislation which would establish a program to coordinate restoration of and provide grant funding and technical assistance to the waterways and estuaries that flow into the New York New Jersey Harbor. Authorizing up to $50,000,000 annually through fiscal year 2027, the program would utilize science-based principles to protect fish and wildlife habitats, improve water quality, and increase public access to waterways that are integral to many of our northeast national parks, including sites within the Hudson National Heritage Area and National Parks of NY Harbor. Funding and technical assistance programs would also enhance public education and mitigate flood risks for at-risk and front-line communities.

H.R. 5973 - the Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Reauthorization Act of 2021: NPCA supports this legislation, which would reauthorize an important program to protect and restore wildlife habitat in and around the Great Lakes. Originally enacted in 1990, the Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Act is the only program specific to restoring Great Lakes habitat. It authorizes the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to partner with states, tribes, other federal agencies and other stakeholders to develop and implement proposals for the restoration of fish and wildlife resources in the Great Lakes Basin. Apostle Islands, Pictured Rocks, Isle Royale, and Indiana Dunes are home to some of North America’s more fascinating wildlife, like gray wolf, Canada lynx, moose and bald eagle. The lakes are home to numerous fish and millions of birds migrate through the region. Important habitat was lost over decades of U.S. western settlement and industrial development. The Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration program supports the region’s effort to reverse that damage.