Tester statement on Tenderfoot Acquisition
(U.S. SENATE) – Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement in response to news that Montanans will enjoy guaranteed public access to the Tenderfoot area, located along the Smith River, thanks to the popular Land and Water Conservation Fund:
“Access to public lands is a top priority for Montana’s hunters and anglers, and for Montana’s economy. The Land and Water Conservation Fund’s responsible investment in the Tenderfoot will provide Montana’s sportsmen and women with access to good hunting and fishing opportunities forever. I will keep fighting for smart investments that preserve Montana's most treasured places.”
Tester, Chairman of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus, increased LWCF funding in last year’s budget to ensure access for sportsmen on public lands through conservation easements. LWCF funding comes from offshore oil and gas receipts.
The Senate recently passed Tester’s Making Public Lands Public Act, which requires 1.5 percent of LWCF funding be set aside each year to secure public access to existing public lands.
The Tenderfoot Acquisition, which will become part of the Lewis and Clark National Forest, is supported by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and will ensure access for hunters and anglers.