WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), together with Congressman Dwight Evans (D-PA) and a bipartisan group of Members, introduced the Delaware River Basin Conservation Reauthorization Act. The legislation reauthorizes funding for conservation efforts, and allows federal, state, and local governments to collaborate on restoration projects. Since being signed in 2016, the legislation has funded 149 projects with $40.4 million.
The legislation is endorsed by the Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed and Senator Tom Carper (D-DE) has introduced a companion bill in the Senate.
“The Delaware River is a crucial natural resource for our communities in Bucks and Montgomery Counties and for Pennsylvania’s neighbors," said Congressman Fitzpatrick. "I am proud to introduce this bipartisan, bicameral bill to ensure that federal funding continues to reach our state, local, and non-profit partners engaging in conservation and restoration efforts throughout the Delaware River Watershed area."
“I’m pleased that we again have bipartisan support for reauthorizing the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program,” said Congressman Evans. “This program provides valuable support, through technical and grant assistance, to restoration and protection activities throughout the Delaware River Basin, a vital watershed covering over 13,000 square miles in four states and reaching 15 million people.”
“The Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed commends Representative Brian Fitzpatrick for introducing Reauthorization of the Delaware River Basin Conservation Act, which would support the Basin through critical funding, bolstering our ability to protect and preserve this beloved natural resource for years to come. Rep. Fitzpatrick (PA), along with his House colleagues, Rep. Dwight Evans (PA), and Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (DE), have been and continue to be clean water champions in the Delaware River Watershed,” said Kelly Knutson, Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed director. “Reauthorization of this critical and well-established federal program would continue to affirm the nationally and historically significant Delaware River Watershed as a resource worth protecting. In order to fully realize the benefits of the Act and help ensure a healthy watershed for generations to come, we must provide continued support to the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program and reauthorize the Program before the Act lapses in September 2023”
“The Delaware River Basin Conservation Act has been a tremendous success story in bringing all levels of government together with community partners to restore and protect vital wetlands, habitats, and waterways,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper, Chair of the Environment and Public Works Committee in the Senate. “My hope is that we can build on this track record by reauthorizing this legislation and expanding the tools at our disposal to be better stewards of the Delaware River Basin. Enacting our bill would benefit our environment and economy by cleaning up an important source of drinking water, protecting wildlife in the watershed, and providing a boost to local tourism.”
Read the text of the legislation HERE.