Wednesday, September 13, 2017

House Republicans Ignoring Evidence Piling Up There Are No Unused Environmental Funds, Latest From PA Land Trust Assn

The PA Land Trust Association late Tuesday evening sent a detailed report to all House members showing all monies in the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund, Environmental Stewardship (Growing Greener) Fund and farm preservation monies are fully committed to local projects administered by DCNR.
The information was generated in response to a proposal by House Republicans to transfer nearly $600 million of what they said was “unused” monies from these and other funds to balance the state budget.
Clearly, this information shows these funds are all committed.
The text of the PLTA message to House members follows—
Dear Representative:
The Pennsylvania Land Trust Association’s members have reported that some of you desire more detail from the state agencies to show that Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund, Growing Greener, and farm preservation funds are truly committed to projects as stated by the agencies.
The Association requested such data from DCNR, some of which is now posted at DCNR’s website.  I am writing to share it with you.
The data confirms what the Association had previously understood: Essentially all dedicated fund money managed by DCNR is in fact committed to projects.
This is not surprising because many excellent community conservation and recreation projects aren’t funded each year due to a shortage of funding.
Also, lack of funding has led to a $800 million backlog in State Park and Forest improvement projects.
In the attachment “dcnr_open_grant_projects_hou.pdf” you will see an itemized list of active grant projects, for which DCNR will pay out $63,874,922 when the projects have been completed and final paperwork approved.
This $63,874,922 is fully committed to local governments and charitable organizations. However, these projects are in various stages of completion, and DCNR won’t fully reimburse the grantees for the projects until they are 100% complete. (Districts labelled “0” indicate projects covering multiple districts.)
In the attachment “DCNR_Park_Forest_Projects.pdf” you will see an itemized list of State Parks and Forests with the amounts of money committed but not yet paid out for engineering, design, construction, and other project costs in each.
These commitments, which support many many private contractors working across the Commonwealth, total $96,124,956.
Again, as evidenced by the many communities who haven’t gotten their very good projects funded and the clear need for many State Park and Forest improvements, the demand on Pennsylvania’s dedicated conservation funds—Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund, Growing Greener, and farmland preservation—far exceeds the availability of dollars.
THERE IS A SHORTAGE, not a surplus of funds.
Thank you for your consideration.
Andrew M. Loza, Executive Director
Pennsylvania Land Trust Association
For more information on programs and initiatives, visit the PA Land Trust Association website.
More And More Evidence And Opposition Piling Up:
-- PennDOT Warns Lawmakers Raiding Funds Jeopardizes Transit, Infrastructure Projects

No comments :

Post a Comment

Subscribe To Receive Updates:

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner