Land Rights Network
American Land Rights Association
PO Box 400, Battle Ground, WA 98604
(360) 687-3087 Fax: (360) 687-2973
Legislative Office: 507 Seward Square SE - Washington, DC 20003
Breaking News – Permanent LWCF added to Energy bill in Senate.
Call your Congressman to stand firm against a permanent Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). Deluge your House member at (202) 225-3121.
Ask for the staff that handles the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
Tell them the LWCF is included in the Senate Energy Bill. They may not know. The Senate bill must now be reconciled with the House bill that did not include a permanent LWCF.
Late Breaking News: A massive permanent LWCF land acquisition fund has been added to the Energy bill that passed the Senate. It must now be reconciled with the House bill that already passed but without the permanent trust LWCF.
Your calls urging your Congressman to stand firm are critical.
Congress must not allow the fund to be used for eminent domain (condemnation).
Urge your Congressman and both Senators to block any attempt to turn the LWCF into a permanent Trust Fund. Tell them to include a provision saying that any funds from the LWCF cannot be used for condemnation (eminent domain). Otherwise eminent domain is automatically included.
Condemnation authority is automatic unless Congress includes language blocking it. So don’t believe it when your Congressman
says that condemnation is not included. They may not know the authority is automatic with funding.
Call your Senators and Congressman once a week. You have a good chance to stop the LWCF trust fund if you make your calls. The LWCF must not be made permanent. The Greens are pushing hard, see article below.
Your calls, faxes and e-mails at this last minute really count. Call your Congressman at (202) 225-3121. Call both your Senators at (202)
224-3121 to oppose ANY permanent (trust fund) reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF).
Look below toward the bottom to see how your Senators voted on the LWCF (Land and Water Conservation Fund) in a key vote last year. If your Senator voted wrong (supported the trust fund) you need to make sure he or she knows you will keep this in mind when you vote in November.
Danger: APPROPRIATIONS: Over 200 bipartisan House members urge robust LWCF funding. (Most of these are Democrats with a few Republicans.
Your calls will help keep the Republican opposition in the House.) (In the Senate you won by just one vote last time. Your calls are
critical.) A copy of the article about the Dear Colleague Letter is at the bottom of this letter.
Your Action Items:
-----1. Call your Congressman to oppose reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) as a permanent Trust Fund as part of the Energy Bill. Call your Congressman at (202) 225-3121.
-----2. Call both your Senators to oppose reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) as a permanent Trust Fund. There must be no permanent Trust Fund. It must be limited to 7 years or less.
The Park Service and other agencies with land acquisition funded by the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) are more responsive and careful dealing with landowners if they have a short reauthorization date.
Make the LWCF permanent and you have the first step to a full blown trust fund. It takes away any incentive for the Park Service and other agencies to treat landowners fairly. Call any Senator at (202) 224-3121.
The LWCF is how the Park Service, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service and Bureau of Land Management buy millions of acres of private land and make it government land taking it off the tax rolls while destroying rural America. It funds eminent domain (condemnation) by these agencies.
The Park Service alone has purchased the homes, farms and land of over
100,000 landowners, many under the threat of condemnation. The LWCF is the enemy of rural America, ranching, farming and private land ownership.
-----3. American Land Rights is sending hundreds of thousands of faxes, e-mails and letters to Members and allies to get them to call, fax and e-mail their Senators and Congressman. You must do your part.
-----4. See how your Senators voted. It’s URGENT that you call both your Senators regarding how they voted on the Burr LWCF Trust Fund Amendment. Ask for the staff person who handles the Land and Water Conservation Fund. You only won by one vote.
Urge your Senators to oppose full funding for the Land and Water Conservation fund in any future votes. Urge them to Vote No on any Land Acquisition Trust Fund. Urge them put a provision in the law that stops the Federal agencies from using the LWCF for condemnation (eminent domain).
President Obama and his staff want to convert the LWCF into a fully funded automatic off-budget land acquisition Trust Fund starting in the 2017 fiscal year that starts in October, 2016. The LWCF would not have to compete each year in the appropriations process with education, health care, Social Security, the Military and many more important priorities. Call any Senator at (202) 224-3121.
>>>>>These Senators voted against you last year and should know better
are: Capito, Blunt, Collins, Corker, Gardner, Graham, Heitkamp, King, Kirk, Manchin, McCaskill, McCain, Merkley, Murray, Portman, Tester, and Thune voted for the trust fund against you. Call them to tell them you know how they voted. Make your calls. Deluge them with letters (by fax only) and e-mails.
-----5. Call your Congressman at (202) 225-3121 and follow the same instructions as for your Senators. There must be no permanent LWCF Trust Fund.
The Green groups are going all out the use the LWCF renewal as a tool to create a massive Billion Dollar A Year Land Acquisition Trust Fund.
Stop the plan to create the Land and Water Conservation) land acquisition Trust Fund (LWCF). You must call, fax and e-mail your Congressman and both Senators today and once a week. No permanent Land and Water Conservation Fund.
The Federal government can’t take care of what it already has.
According to the GAO (Government Accountability Office) the Park Service alone is $11 billion behind in deferred maintenance. The BLM, Forest Service and Fish and Wildlife Service are another $11 billion behind. That’s a total of $22 billion in deferred maintenance. Why should they be buying any more?
There is a whole series of GAO reports critical of how the Park Service and other agencies have used the LWCF.
Our view: Keep private lands in private hands.
The Greens and their allies in Congress are using this as an opportunity to turn the LWCF into an automatic $900 million per year trust fund. That must not be allowed to happen. Former Park Service Chief of Land Acquisition Will Kriz was quoted in a newspaper as saying “There is no such thing as a willing seller.”
American Land Rights has fought a massive land acquisition Trust Fund since the 70’s. You helped defeat the American Heritage Trust in 1988. You defeated huge $3 billion per year CARA trust fund in 2001.
You can do it again. The LWCF must be reauthorized Congress. You can make sure it is limited.
Your enemies are using the reauthorization bill as an opportunity to make the LWCF into an automatic trust fund. That cannot be allowed to happen. Call, fax and e-mail your Senator. Now is the time. You have no time to waste.
Please send a copy of this message to at least ten (10) other people.
Said Rep. Rob Bishop at a hearing in his committee, “The bottom line is what we have to do is make sure the state side program – the program people like – has to be emphasized. The (federal) program which interest groups are using to fund themselves without any accountability, that has to be controlled.”
“LWCF stateside funding has been hijacked by land conservation advocates at the expense of outdoor recreation,” he said.
“Stateside supporters believe strongly in conservation goals - but not at the expense of what was once a comprehensive, meaningful outdoor recreation program.”
Please take immediate action! Call your Congressman at (202) 225-3121.
PS. After a 50-year run the LWCF Act expired on September 30, 2015 although Congress can still appropriate money for it in annual spending bills, such as the fiscal 2017 Interior appropriations bills.
The battle to stop the new Wetlands Jurisdiction Regulations (WOTUS) continues in the courts as well as Congress. Thirty one states filed suit against the new EPA Corps WOTUS regulations and a court put the new regulations on hold nationwide now. But it will take Congressional action to put a stop to these massive new EPA-Corps Wetlands Jurisdiction Regulations.
Congress only extended the LWCF for 3 years so the battle to stop the LWCF trust fund must continue. Your support is critical to stopping the land acquisition trust fund and the EPA Corps WOTUS rule. Your calls are vital.
American Land Rights has led the fight to save the “Navigability”
requirement and stop EPA and Corps. Keep calling. Don’t let up.
Please send your Membership Renewal for $35 plus a special contribution to help ALRA alert your allies and get them into action to stop the EPA Corps as well as the LWCF trust fund by Thursday, May 19th.
>>>>>LWCF Talking Points:
-----The LWCF must not be reauthorized without protections for landowners and communities from eminent domain (condemnation).
-----The LWCF funds must only be allowed to be used with Willing Sellers.
-----The LWCF must not be allowed to become an automatic Trust Fund.
-----The LWCF must stay subject to competing each year with other priorities and not allowed to take a priority over the Military, education, Social Security, health care and other important priorities.
-----Land & Water Conservation Fund Threatens Rural America.
-----Keep private lands in private hands.
-----All LWCF funding must go through the Congressional appropriations process.
-----All LWCF funding must have Congressional appropriations oversight.
-----The LWCF must not allow condemnation or eminent domain without specific Congressional action.
-----The LWC F should be used to maintain land already owned by Federal land agencies.
-----The key to stopping abuses is limiting the money. If the Park Service has the money they will use it to threaten eminent domain in nearly every conversation with private landowners about selling their property. “Sell or else” is their frame of reference.
You need to take immediate action. The ACTION ITEMS are listed along with how your Senator voted on the Land and Water Conservation Fund Vote last year. They only missed by one vote of turning the LWCF into a Trust Fund. Your calls really make a difference.
Look below to see how your Senator voted on LWCF Trust Fund. Send a letter by fax or e-mail for the record. A one page letter (by fax) is OK. Call your Senators and Congressman to get their fax number. Both your Senators must hear from you on the LWCF. Please try to phone him or her every week. Ask for the staff person who handles the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
The vote last year was so close that more votes will come shortly to turn the Land and Water Conservation Fund into a Giant Land Acquisition Trust Fund. The Greens want the LWCF turned into an off-budget automatic trust fund. The size they want eventually is $3 billion per year. Over time that would be the end of rural America.
When you call, ask for your Congressman by name. Then ask for the staff person who handles the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Ask for his or her e-mail address. Secret: It is usually their first name followed by a dot. Then the second name followed by the @ sign. Then:
Secret: It is different for your Senators. It is the staff person’s first name followed by an Underscore. Then the second name followed by the @ sign. Then your Senators name followed by a dot. That is followed by the word --Senate- followed by a dot. That is followed by the word gov. Look at the Senators e-mails we have sent you for samples. Some Senators think if the bill doesn’t mention condemnation, there is no condemnation. That’s wrong! The Park Service, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service and BLM all can use condemnation automatically with any appropriation unless Congress specifically prohibits it. Condemnation comes with the power to govern.
The Senate Roll Call Vote on the Burr amendment #92, as modified (Land and Water Conservation Fund) January 29, 2015. The Senators who voted
(Yea) voted in support of the Burr LWCF Trust Fund Amendment voted against you and rural America. A YEA vote was against landowners, farmers, ranchers, miners, forestry advocates and rural communities.
Here are the YES Votes. These Senators must hear from you. You must deluge them with calls, e-mails and faxes. Don’t take your Senator who voted against the LWCF Trust Fund for granted. Even if they voted no the last time, they need to hear from you. The Greens are crawling all over the Capitol working for votes.