It will be used for infrastructure needs.
Washington DC. (KM). There’s some good news for Cunningham Falls State Park near Thurmont. It will be receiving $1,008,132 for improvements under the Land and Water Conservation Fund. “A federal fund that aims to help state parks in our system nationwide of providing park service to the people of America,” says Senator Ben Cardin (D), who, along with fellow Senator Chris Van Hollen (D), announced the award of the grant last week.
The Land and Water Conservation Fund was established in 1965 to provide funds to federal,, state and local governments to acquire ;and and water. or easements (development rights), for the benefit of all Americans. The purpose is to protect historic and natural resources in the form of parks, forests and wildlife areas.
Cardin says this grant, which is a matching grant, will be used for infrastructure. “You’re dealing with the roads. You’re dealing with the paths. You’re dealing with the basic infrastructure of the park,” he says. In addition, it will help Cunningham Falls State Park deal with an increasing number of visitors. “So it upgrades the park’s capacity to deal with the demand.”
The grant will need to be matched by a third party, according to Cardin.
The revenue comes from off shore oil and gas leases.
The Land and Water Conservation Fund is administered by the National Park Service, but the funds are separate from the money used to operate the national parks.
Cardin says these grants, which are very competitive, have made a big difference for more than 50 years for Americans who visit the state as well as national parks. “We know that state budgets have been very much stressed. So it does give an incentive for leveraging with the federal partnership to give a community greater access to recreation and open space. So it’s had a significant impact,.” he says.
It’s a win for all Americans. “It helps not only conserve our land but also our water resources nationwide,” he says. “So it’s part of our investment to future generations that allows current populations to enjoy the outdoors.”
By Kevin McManus