VIDEO: Udall Calls for Passage of Bipartisan Land and Water Conservation Bill with Major Wins for NM
In a speech on the Senate floor, Udall urges Congress to support “keeping public lands in public hands”
WASHINGTON – on Wednesday, U.S. Senator Tom Udall, ranking member on the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, spoke on the Senate floor to outline his strong support for S. 47, the Natural Resources Management Act, a bipartisan public lands package that includes major conservation victories Udall championed for New Mexico’s treasured public lands and for local economies. In his speech, Udall emphasized the importance of “keeping public lands in public hands,” and urged Congress to pass the historic package, which is comprised of over 100 public lands, natural resources, and water bills aimed at protecting New Mexico and the entire nation’s greatest natural treasures for generations to come.
The package includes several New Mexico priorities that Udall and U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich have championed, including landmark legislation to permanently authorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), along with major bills to establish new wilderness areas throughout the state – including both the Rio Grande del Norte and Organ-Mountains Desert Peaks National Monuments – to benefit public lands and local economies. The package also includes a Udall-sponsored measure to reinvigorate the nation’s Conservation Corps.
“This legislation – which puts together over 100 public lands, natural resources, and water bills – protects and expands our nation’s lands and strengthens local economies,” Udall said. “This sweeping package shows the country the tremendous amount that can be accomplished when both parties in Congress roll up their sleeves and work together toward a common goal… I am looking forward to this Congress showing its strong support for keeping public lands in public hands and protecting them for future generations.”
Udall has long fought for strong funding for New Mexico conservation priorities, including permanent reauthorization and full funding for LWCF, which plays a critical role in safeguarding our most cherished open spaces and bolstering regional outdoor recreation economies. In New Mexico, the LWCF has funded over 1,200 projects, helping to increase recreational opportunities and preserve thousands of acres of precious public lands, from Rio Grande del Norte National Monument to Gila National Forest.
“The package represents the hard work of countless individuals and organizations throughout the country – all committed to preserving and protecting our country’s greatest treasures. I stand resolutely behind that commitment as well, and urge unanimous passage of this historic package,” Udall concluded.
The full text of Udall’s remarks as prepared for delivery is available HERE.