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Interior secretary announces $43 million to states for parks, outdoor recreation

Posted July 8, 2014

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Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Mayor Betsy Price visit with children for Camp Fort Worth at Gateway Park.

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell joined Mayor Betsy Price, co-chair of the bipartisan coalition of Mayors for Parks to announce that $43.38 million will be distributed from the Land and Water Conservation Fund to all 50 states for outdoor recreation and conservation projects.

The secretary’s visit to Fort Worth’s Gateway Park is part of a weeklong series of events to highlight the fund’s successes on its 50th anniversary. President Obama has called for full, permanent funding in his proposed budget.

“Over its 50 year history, the Land and Water Conservation Fund has helped fund over 40,000 local conservation and outdoor recreation projects by reinvesting a small portion of revenue from offshore oil and gas development in waters owned by the American people,” Jewell said. “These local projects — parks, ball fields, open spaces — play an important role in improving the health and vitality of urban areas and protecting natural areas for future generations of Americans to enjoy.”

Jewell cited Gateway Park in Fort Worth as a prime example of how the Land and Water Conservation Fund can improve the quality of life for local residents. The State of Texas has leveraged funding through the program to make Gateway Park a prime destination for recreation, with equestrian, hiking and biking trails; soccer fields; a canoe and kayak launch; and a fishing pier. The projects are part of $179 million in state and local assistance grants made to Texas since 1964.

“Our nation’s investment in the Land and Water Conservation Fund is an essential tool for Fort Worth and other cities to create new and revitalized parks, green spaces and recreation opportunities,” Price said. “It makes our communities economically, environmentally and culturally vibrant. Most importantly, it helps us build a livable city for everyone to enjoy.”

View a state-by-state breakdown of the funding online.

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