Collins and King announce more than $16 million for Maine wildlife conservation and recreation

WASHINGTON DC – U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King today announced that Maine will receive $16,194,065 from the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration (WSFR) program to support wildlife conservation efforts and outdoor sports air in the state. The funding will help conserve Maine’s outdoor spaces, manage wildlife populations and support outdoor recreation opportunities for future generations.

“Outdoor recreation and sports are an integral part of Maine’s history and culture, allowing Mainers to connect with the nature and wildlife around us,” said Senator Collins and King in a joint statement. “This new Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program funding will increase resources for our state’s incredible outdoor sports opportunities and support conservation programs to safeguard these valuable assets.” This is an important investment in Maine’s future and will spur conservation of the state’s outdoors, wildlife and recreation for future generations.

“The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program is the backbone of fish and wildlife conservation in Maine, protecting and enhancing Maine’s cherished fish and wildlife”, said Judy Camuso, commissioner of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. “This North American model of conservation is responsible for the recovery and conservation of iconic species such as bald eagles and moose, while protecting and enhancing species such as brook trout and deer. of Virginia all over Maine. Hunters, anglers, shooters and boaters fund programs that benefit all of Maine and our wildlife.

The WSFR program distributes $1.5 billion nationwide to state wildlife agencies to support the restoration, conservation and management of wildlife for the benefit of the public, hunter education, and development and management firing ranges. To date, the program has distributed more than $25.5 billion in allocations for state conservation and recreation projects. These programs are intended to foster cooperative partnerships between federal and state agencies. By working alongside hunters, anglers and other outdoor interests, these programs serve to enhance recreational opportunities while advancing sustainable resource goals.

Funding will be distributed to Maine programs as follows:

· Sport fish catering the programs will receive $3,997,809 to conserve Maine’s waters and more than 70 species of freshwater and sport fish. This funding will also help improve fish passage research and management, expand outdoor angling and ethics education courses, and increase fishing and boating opportunities. of pleasure.

· Wildlife restoration the programs will receive $9,865,260 in federal funding to provide grants to agencies across the state that work on wildlife research, species reintroduction, and habitat management and restoration.

· Hunter Education will receive $2,250,996 to develop and increase safe access to hunting, fishing and boating in Maine.

With more than one million people participating in wildlife-related recreation in Maine each year, Senator Collins and King have a long history of working to increase access to these opportunities while ensuring that Maine’s outdoor treasures are preserved for future generations. As co-sponsors of the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA), Senators Collins and King helped move GAOA forward through passage in 2020 and secured funding for Maine’s waterways through the Funds Act Permanent Land and Water Conservation Fund. Recently, King also introduced a bill to create a “Waze for Parks” that would increase accessibility and eliminate overcrowding in national parks to ensure access while protecting public lands. Sen. Collins and King also recently introduced a bill that creates a dedicated funding stream for projects that expand outdoor recreation opportunities in urban and low-income communities across the country.

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