The Association Applauds Passage of the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act in Infrastructure Package

July 1, 2020

The Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies applauds the adoption of the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act as an amendment to the Moving Forward Act, which passed today in the House of Representatives.  The bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R.3742) will benefit the nation’s economy by creating as many as 33,500 new jobs annually, supporting future economic growth in the outdoor recreation sector through infrastructure improvements, and increase resiliency and recovery of imperiled species and their habitats.  The Association would like to thank Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI) and Congressman Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) for their leadership on this bill that has brought 182 bipartisan members of the House of Representatives together as cosponsors.

State fish and wildlife agencies have identified over 12,000 species in need of proactive conservation to prevent them from becoming threatened or endangered. The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act would provide an annual investment of $1.4 billion and contributing an additional $3.36 billion of economic output (a net positive gain of $1.96 billion to the Gross Domestic Product), while also allowing state and tribal wildlife managers to proactively conserve fish and wildlife species of greatest conservation need in a voluntary, non-regulatory manner before federal listing under the Endangered Species Act is warranted.

“We thank the members of the House for adopting this bipartisan amendment to H.R. 2, which includes the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act,” said Secretary Kelly Hepler of South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks and President of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies.  “Restoring fish, wildlife, and their habitats is an effective way to restore critical natural infrastructure, create resilient habitats and communities, create jobs, and is an issue of national importance with no political boundaries.  Americans love their fish, wildlife, and outdoor spaces, and they need them now more than ever.  This provision will elevate our nation’s natural resource treasures for current and future generations in rural and urban communities alike.”

“We are in the midst of an unprecedented biodiversity crisis. RAWA is strong commitment to using innovative, state-based management to safeguard our nation’s environmental heritage for current and future generations,” said Congresswoman Dingell. “Enhancing and investing in our nation’s conservation efforts ensure the long-term health of fish and wildlife throughout the country.”

"The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act is the single most exciting public policy development in the conservation space in decades, said Congressman Jeff Fortenberry. “Thank you to my colleagues Debbie Dingell and Jamie Raskin for joining me in this historic and important effort to protect ecosystems, enhance community, and support recreation.  It’s a winner!"



The Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies represents North America’s fish and wildlife agencies to advance sound, science-based management and conservation of fish and wildlife and their habitats in the public interest. The Association represents its state agency members on Capitol Hill and before the Administration to advance favorable fish and wildlife conservation policy and funding and works to ensure that all entities work collaboratively on the most important issues. The Association also provides member agencies with coordination services on cross-cutting as well as species-based programs that range from birds, fish habitat and energy development to climate change, wildlife action plans, conservation education, leadership training and international relations. Working together, the Association’s member agencies are ensuring that North American fish and wildlife management has a clear and collective voice.