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Senator says National Parks Bill ‘most Important’ in decades

Posted by   /  April 4, 2018  /  No Comments

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Bill would use energy permit revenue to fund backlog of maintenance projects

Roll Call

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., redoubled his efforts this week to pass the National Parks Restoration Act to address the National Parks maintenance backlog. /Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo

Sen. Lamar Alexander and other lawmakers see an avenue to enact the “most important piece of legislation for national parks in decades,” the Tennessee Republican said Tuesday.

Related: Interior Department backing off steep national park fee hikes

In March, a bipartisan group of senators and House members introduced legislation to fund nearly $7 billion in national parks maintenance projects that have been on hold for years.

The maintenance backlog totals a daunting bill of roughly $11.6 billion in pending projects and upkeep.

The maintenance projects in the backlog include repaving roads and parking lots, renovating old lodges, and restoring bathroom facilities.

The National Parks Restoration Act represents a rare opportunity for lawmakers to address the maintenance backlog during President Donald Trump’s administration, which has sought to roll back funding for national parks and environmental protections in favor of increased opportunity for energy production and source exploration.

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