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Maine Delegation Announces More Than $1 Million to Support Land Conservation, Boost Outdoor Recreation in Maine

U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and U.S. Representatives Chellie Pingree and Jared Golden today announced more than $1,000,000 in National Park Service (NPS) Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) grants for conservation and outdoor recreation projects in  Maine. 

The funding was allocated as follows:

  • $495,756 for the town of Windham to acquire 697.4 acres of heavily forested land and then construct a 1.3-mile universal access trail with scenic overlooks. The acquisition will conserve the ecology of the area and provide water recreation access and scenic views to Maine’s most densely populated region, and the creation of the access trail will provide recreation opportunities to all visitors of all abilities.
  • $268,500 for the Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands to purchase and develop 195.4 total acres of land for recreational purposes by constructing a new dirt parking lot and trailhead informational kiosk, and improving the existing trail access road and a new culvert for improved drainage and maintenance work to the existing trail network at what will be the Talking Brook Public Lands.
  • $163,700 for the town of Wayne to replace two tennis courts and two pickleball courts with two new tennis courts and two new pickleball courts with perimeter fencing and sub-court drainage. By renovating the courts, the community, which has limited available facilities, will have a recreational facility that is safe to use and accessible to all regardless of level of physical ability.
  • $102,910 for the town of Searsmont to acquire 63.9 acres of undeveloped land along the Georges River and then develop the area with two trailhead parking areas with info kiosks, ADA compliant primitive restrooms, a maintenance shed, hiking trails, 1700’ of ADA accessible paths, picnic tables, benches, and hand-carry boat launch access. By developing the purchased property, future visitors will benefit from having new outdoor recreation opportunities that are currently not available in Searsmont.

“As Mainers, we know what it means to live ‘The Way Life Should Be’ – enjoying and, importantly, protecting the land we’re fortunate enough to call home. This significant federal funding will help conserve the ecology of the land while also giving Mainers access to improved trails,” the Delegation said. “We championed the Great American Outdoors Act and permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund because of investments like these, and we look forward to seeing these new and improved conserved spaces that will be available to the public for generations to come.”

The LWCF was established in 1964 to support land conservation and urban parks. The program works in partnership with federal, state, and local efforts to protect land in our national parks, national wildlife refuges, national forests, national trails, and other public lands; to preserve working forests and ranchlands; to support state and local parks and playgrounds; to preserve battlefields and other historic and cultural sites; and to provide the tools that communities need to meet their diverse conservation and recreation needs.

Senator King is the Chairman of the Senate National Parks subcommittee and was instrumental in the negotiations and passage of The Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA), which was also championed by Senator Collins, and Reps. Pingree and Golden, and was signed into law in 2020. The bipartisan GAOA fully funds the Land and Water Conservation Fund and addresses the deferred maintenance backlog at our national parks, national wildlife refuges, and national forest lands.

Pingree is ranking member of the House Appropriations Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Subcommittee, which oversees funding for the NPS.


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