Washington, D.C. –U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) voted tonight for a measure that he co-sponsored to increase sportsmen’s access to public lands, protect special habitats and preserve hunting and fishing rights. The Senate voted 92-5 to move forward with consideration of the bill and will continue debating the measure this week.
More than 50 sportmen’s groups, including the National Rifle Association, support the measure.
“Our hunting and fishing heritage – especially in West Virginia – is so important to who we are as a nation,” said Senator Manchin, a member of the Congressional Sportmen’s Caucus. “I truly believe that the people of West Virginia should be able to enjoy hunting and fishing on public lands, and this measure expands people’s ability to go out and enjoy the outdoors.”
Background on several provisions in the bill:
• Making Public Lands Public: Funding will be made available to secure access and rights-of-way to public land that currently has significant hunting and fishing restrictions. A 2004 report to the House Committee on Appropriations found that found 35 million acres of public land had inadequate access for the public.