Tester Statement on Deal to Protect Public Access to Nearly 200,000 Acres of Forest Lands in Montana

Following news of a deal between the Trust for Public Land, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, and Southern Pines Plantation to set up a conservation easement on nearly 200,000 acres of land formerly belonging to Weyerhaeuser, U.S. Senator Jon Tester released the following statement:

“Montana’s landscapes are the envy of the world, and today’s announcement is great news for our economy and our state. I’m grateful to all the folks who played a role in making this happen, and I look forward to continuing our work to ensure these lands – and the outdoor recreation economy that depends on them – will remain open to the public for generations to come.

The deal will utilize funds from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), which is on the cusp of receiving full, permanent funding thanks to Tester’s Great American Outdoors Act—currently awaiting a vote in the House of Representatives. Tester has been a supporter of full, mandatory funding for LWCF since his arrival in the Senate.