||20-year, continuation of a 10 percent levy on offshore gas operations, which fund the Forever Wild program and the purchase of recreational lands
About the Campaign:
Alabama voters will decide whether to renew Alabama Forever Wild program for another 20 years.
The program, which is funded by a portion of the profits generated from the natural gas fields within three miles of the Alabama coast in the Gulf of Mexico, has provided an average of $10 million a year for land conservation.
What's At Stake
Alabama's Forever Wild Program was established in 1992, by constitutional amendment, to provide for the purchase of public recreational lands. The program purchases lands for general recreation, nature preserves, additions to Wildlife Management Areas and state parks.
Since it began, Forever Wild has protected 220,000 acres that provide hunting, fishing, hiking, birding and other outdoor recreation. It has brought in $40 million in matching grants as well as gifts from private landowners.
The need for Forever Wild is greater than ever. Despite the programís success, Alabama has the least amount of land available for public use in the South and the state continues to lose publicly accessible hunting lands, wetlands and critical wildlife habitat at an alarming pace.
If Forever Wild is not renewed, Alabama would lose its only state funding to expand public lands and all the economic benefits that result. Funds spent conserving land support tourism, outdoor recreation, and a better quality of life that attracts businesses to the state. Outdoor recreation alone is a $2.2 billion dollar annual business in the state.
The campaign to renew the act is supported by an extremely broad coalition, including the National Rifle Association, the League of Women Voters, the Business Council of Alabama, the Christian Coalition of Alabama, as well as the stateís hunting, fishing and environmental groups.
Get Involved in the Statewide Campaign:
For more information, go to Protect Forever Wild.
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