Reject Conservation Cuts! Protect the Keystone Fund and other conservation investments

Will your call, letter or meeting be the one to make the difference for conservation? It very well could, but you must act.

Pennsylvania has made tangible and lasting investments in conservation, thanks to the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund and farmland preservation program, both established in 1993 as well as Growing Greener, established in 1999. With the support of these programs, Pennsylvania has been establishing and improving parks and trails, protecting wildlife habitats, preserving productive farms and saving other important green spaces (such as historic battlefields and neighborhood gardens) that will define PA communities and shape the lives of Pennsylvanians for decades and centuries to come. The past two decades of conservation investments have put Pennsylvania on the right track.

However, we are perilously close to going off the track. The Corbett Administration has suggested to the House and Senate Republican Caucuses of the General Assembly that funding for Keystone, farm preservation and Growing Greener be axed to balance the 2014-15 budget. Legislators are looking everywhere for “easy” cuts, so if we don’t make it clear to them that cutting conservation is unacceptable, we will lose these crucial conservation programs. (We aren’t talking about just one year; the reality in Harrisburg is that a program that is cut for one year is likely cut forever.)

What can you do? Make personal contacts:

Call or write your legislators. RIGHT NOW. Tell them to protect the Keystone Fund so that it can continue to deliver lasting legacies for conservation and recreation–so that it can create tangible benefits that last for decades, even centuries. Tell them to protect farmland preservation and Growing Greener.

Get the word out to your members, colleagues and friends. Lawmakers need to hear from a broad group of people. They need to understand that it’s about far more than helping a few outdoor enthusiasts or farmers. It’s about the health of our communities and the people in them. It’s about preventing flooding and saving wildlife. It’s about protecting the environment, the agricultural industry, local jobs and real estate values.*

When can you do it?

Don’t wait. Budget discussions are intensifying in Harrisburg. Catch legislators in Harrisburg on 6/11, their district offices on 6/12 and 6/13 and in Harrisburg at the beginning of next week.

 

*See the conservation benefits guides at ConservationTools.org.

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