Senator Tester Secures Funding For Public Lands Restoration
U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., announced last week that he has secured $26 million in Bureau of Land Management funding for landscape restoration and resilience projects across Montana. Tester secured the funding from his Inflation Reduction Act, which he was the only member of Montana’s congressional delegation to support.
“Healthy public lands are critical to the thousands of jobs supported by Montana’s $7.1 billion outdoor economy, and are central to keeping our state the Last Best Place,” said Tester. “The Inflation Reduction Act is continuing to lower costs for Montana families across the board, and these investments in our public lands will ensure that some of our state’s greatest assets remain strong for generations to come. I’m proud to have supported this legislation that strengthens Montana’s outdoor economy, and I’ll always stand up for Montana’s families and small businesses.”
Funding for Montana’s projects comes from Tester’s Inflation Reduction Act and will be delivered to three Montana landscapes through the Bureau of Land Management. Projects include: * $9.54 million to the Blackfoot/ Clark Fork Valley near Missoula for watershed restoration, forestry work, and infrastructure improvements.
* $9.98 million to the Missouri Headwaters/Big Hole Valley in southwest Montana for restoration of riparian areas and watershed rehabilitation.
* $6.76 million to land north of the Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge near Glasgow and Malta for habitat and riparian restoration, and wildlife friendly fence replacement.
Tester has led the charge to cut costs for Montana’s families and seniors through his Inflation Reduction Act. In addition to today’s announcement, the law requires Medicare to negotiate drug prices, caps out-of-pocket prescription drug costs for Medicare patients at $2,000/year, caps the cost of insulin for Medicare patients at $35/ month, and extends Affordable Care Act provisions to prevent price hikes for thousands of Montanans. The legislation was signed into law in August 2022 and is fully paid for by holding corporations and billionaires accountable.
Additionally, as a longtime public lands advocate, Tester has long fought to secure funding to improve access, make infrastructure improvements, and preserve Montana’s outdoor heritage. He championed the Great American Outdoors Act, legislation that secures permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund at $900 million annually and allocates $9.5 billion to address maintenance backlogs on public lands across the United States. Last week his bipartisan Simplifying Outdoor Access for Recreation (SOAR) Act to improve the permitting process for outfitters, educational organizations, and community groups to access public land passed through the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, setting up the legislation for a full vote on the Senate floor.