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Bipartisan Bill Addressing America’s Wildlife Crisis Gains Additional Cosponsors

The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act would direct $1.3 billion of existing revenues towards proactive, state-led wildlife conservation

WASHINGTON – A bill aimed at helping wildlife on the decline continues to gain bipartisan momentum in the House of Representatives. The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R. 4647), introduced by Reps. Jeff Fortenberry, R-Nebr., and Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., would direct $1.3 billion of existing revenue from federal oil and gas leases towards state-led efforts to recover species at risk.

“We are pleased with the strong bipartisan support we're seeing on behalf of this groundbreaking legislation,” said Collin O'Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “This bill will help recover thousands of wildlife species through proactive, collaborative, on-the-ground efforts. The approach is unique because it calls for early action to save struggling wildlife, rather than waiting until species are on the brink of extinction.”

At least 12,000 species of wildlife and plants are in need of conservation efforts, according to the state wildlife agencies. Habitat loss, invasive species, and severe weather are taking a severe toll on birds, mammals, fish, amphibians, reptiles, butterflies, and bees.

The bill will fund state efforts to rebuild native wildlife populations. These efforts will be guided by the existing State Wildlife Action Plans, which are developed collaboratively by the state fish and wildlife agencies in consultation with landowners, businesses, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. States will be required to provide 25 percent matching funds.

Here is how the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act will help wildlife and people:

  • NO TAX INCREASE — The $1.3 billion will come from existing revenues from energy and mineral fees on federal lands and waters. This is a small portion of the overall revenues from these sources.
  • A PROVEN MECHANISM — The bill will allocate funds via the Wildlife Conservation and Restoration subaccount of the Pittman-Robertson Act, which was originally passed in 1937.
  • LOCAL CONTROL — The funds from this bill will be controlled by state fish and wildlife agencies.
  • A HISTORY OF SUCCESS — State fish and wildlife agencies have had great successes in restoring species once on the brink—bald eagles, white-tailed deer, elk, turkey, striped bass, and more.
  • HELPING WILDLIFE AT RISK — The money will largely be spent on efforts such as restoring habitats, reintroducing native wildlife, fighting invasive species, and monitoring emerging diseases.
  • CONNECTING PEOPLE WITH NATURE — States can use some of the funds for wildlife viewing, nature photography, educational programs, and trail improvements.

“We cannot stand by and watch as so many of America’s wildlife species continue to decline -- and if this bill becomes law, we won’t have to,” said Naomi Edelson, the National Wildlife Federation’s senior director of wildlife partnerships. “This bill goes by the stitch-in-time-saves-nine principle. We can save money and save wildlife by funding conservation efforts today rather than waiting until thousands of species are on the brink. The representatives supporting this bill are showing real foresight and future generations of Americans will thank them.”

The National Wildlife Federation applauds the House members listed below who have currently signed on in support of this bill:

  • Rep. Jeff Fortenberry — R-NE-1 —12/14/2017 (sponsor)
  • Rep. Debbie Dingell — D-MI-12 — 12/14/2017 (original cosponsor)
  • Rep. Tom Cole — R-OK-4 — 12/21/2017
  • Rep. Suzanne Bonamici — D-OR-1 — 01/10/2018
  • Rep. Ann M. Kuster — D-NH-2 — 01/10/2018
  • Rep. Frank A. LoBiondo — R-NJ-2 — 01/18/2018
  • Rep. Nydia M. Velazquez — D-NY-7 — 01/18/2018
  • Rep. Salud O. Carbajal — D-CA-24 — 01/18/2018
  • Rep. Jerry McNerney — D-CA-9 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Zoe Lofgren — D-CA-19 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Suzan K. DelBene — D-WA-1 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Carol Shea-Porter — D-NH-1 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Jared Huffman — D-CA-2 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Anna G. Eshoo — D-CA-18 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Kurt Schrader — D-OR-5 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Henry C. "Hank," Jr. Johnson — D-GA-4 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Janice D. Schakowsky — D-IL-9 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. John Garamendi — D-CA-3 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Alan S. Lowenthal — D-CA-47 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Beto O'Rourke — D-TX-16 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Daniel T. Kildee — D-MI-5 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Brian K. Fitzpatrick — R-PA-8 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Gene Green — D-TX-29 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Billy Long — R-MO-7 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Scott R. Tipton — R-CO-3 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. David Rouzer — R-NC-7 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Seth Moulton — D-MA-6 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. J. French Hill — R-AR-2 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Jared Polis — D-CO-2 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Richard Hudson — R-NC-8 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Glenn Thompson — R-PA-5 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Markwayne Mullin — R-OK-2 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Tom Marino — R-PA-10 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Elise M. Stefanik — R-NY-21 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Christopher H. Smith — R-NJ-4 — 03/15/2018
  • Rep. Earl Blumenauer — D-OR-3 — 03/22/2018
  • Rep. Earl L. "Buddy" Carter — R-GA-1— 03/22/2018
  • Rep. Hakeem S. Jeffries — D-NY-8 — 03/22/2018
  • Rep. Austin Scott — R-GA-8 — 03/22/2018
  • Rep. Ann Wagner — R-MO-2 — 04/11/2018
  • Rep. Jeff Duncan — R-SC-3 — 04/11/2018
  • Rep. Bruce Westerman — R-AR-4 — 04/11/2018
  • Rep. Jim Cooper — D-TN-5 — 04/11/2018
  • Rep. Charlie Crist — D-FL-13 — 04/11/2018
  • Rep. Timothy J. Walz — D-MN-1 — 04/11/2018
  • Rep. Darren Soto — D-FL-9 — 04/11/2018
  • Rep. Kyrsten Sinema — D-AZ-9 — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Peter A. DeFazio — D-OR-4 — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen — R-AS-At Large — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Carlos Curbelo — R-FL-26 — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Matt Cartwright —D-PA-17 — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Roger W. Marshall — R-KS-1 — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Ryan A. Costello — R-PA-6 — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Adam B. Schiff — D-CA-28 — 05/09/2018
  • Rep. Jason Smith — R-MO-8 — 05/18/2018
  • Rep. Steve Stivers — R-OH-15 — 05/18/2018
  • Rep. Stephen Knight — R-CA-25 — 05/18/2018
  • Rep. Jack Bergman — R-MI-1 — 05/18/2018
  • Rep. Jacky Rosen — D-NV-3 — 06/06/2018
  • Rep. Don Bacon — R-NE-2 — 06/06/2018
  • Rep. David G. Reichert — R-WA-8 — 06/06/2018
  • Rep. Tim Ryan — D-OH-13 — 06/06/2018
  • Rep. Grace F. Napolitano — D-CA-32 — 06/14/2018
  • Rep. Doris O. Matsui — D-CA-6 —06/14/2018
  • Rep. Donald Norcross — D-NJ-1 — 06/14/2018
  • Rep. Pete Sessions — R-TX-32 — 06/14/2018
  • Rep. Henry Cuellar — D-TX-28 — 06/14/2018
  • Rep. Kay Granger — R-TX-12 — 06/19/2018
  • Rep. Michael K. Simpson — R-ID-2 — 06/19/2018
  • Rep. Daniel M. Jr. Donovan — R-NY-11 — 06/22/2018
  • Rep. Mark Pocan — D-WI-2 — 06/22/2018
  • Rep. Mike Quigley — D-IL-5 — 06/22/2018
  • Rep. Anthony G. Brown — D-MD-4 — 07/16/2018
  • Rep. Leonard Lance — R-NJ-7 — 07/16/2018
  • Rep. Filemon Vela — D-TX-34 — 07/16/2018
  • Rep. Barbara Lee — D-CA-13 — 07/16/2018
  • Rep. John H. Rutherford — R-FL-4 — 07/19/2018
  • Rep. Michael C. Burgess — R-TX-26 — 07/19/2018
  • Rep. Rodney Davis — R-IL-13 — 07/19/2018
  • Rep. Lee M. Zeldin — R-NY-1 — 07/19/2018

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