Support for this legislation is a critical step forward for hunters and anglers in America’s largest estuary
The U.S. House of Representatives today passed legislation that preserves the economic and recreational value of the Chesapeake Bay.
The bipartisan Chesapeake Bay Program Reauthorization Act (H.R. 1620) fully funds the EPA’s Chesapeake Bay Program by authorizing $455 million over the next five years. This program hasn’t been formally authorized since 2005, so this legislation will provide much-needed certainty to state, federal, and nonprofit partners working to restore the water quality of the Bay and its tributaries.
“The Chesapeake Bay is the iconic home to incredible fisheries, migrating waterfowl, and powerful economic opportunity, and some of the best hunting and fishing around,” said Steve Kline, chief policy officer of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “Sportsmen and women want to thank Congresswoman Elaine Luria and the cosponsors of this legislation for their work ensuring that Bay watershed states can keep working together to brighten the future of the Chesapeake.”
The Chesapeake Bay Program Reauthorization Act is also part of the America’s Conservation Enhancement Act (ACE Act) which was passed by the Senate unanimously in January. In addition to the Bay provisions, the ACE Act includes a host of fish and wildlife conservation priorities and House floor passage of the ACE Act represents the clearest way for these key legislative efforts to get to the President’s desk. We urge the House to pass the ACE Act, which also:
- Reauthorizes the North American Wetlands Conservation Act at $60 million annually through Fiscal Year 2025. The Act has improved over 30 million acres of wetlands, making it one of the nation’s most effective voluntary conservation programs.
- Establishes a U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service-led task force to address the spread of chronic wasting disease.
- Codifies the National Fish Habitat Partnership. Since 2006, the Partnership has overseen over 840 projects to benefit fish habitat and populations.