Washington, D.C. – President Donald Trump signed the Great American Outdoors Act Tuesday morning, August 4th, 2020, a historic, bipartisan law that marks the largest-ever investment into America’s national parks and public lands. It will also create more than 100,000 infrastructure-related jobs.
President Donald Trump: We are preserving America’s natural heritage
Americans who have visited our national parks during the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic have found them in need of investment. Estimates place the national deferred maintenance backlog across all public lands at approximately $20 billion.
The President’s action today will bring this much-needed maintenance to our public lands, many of which play an important role in our economy. Last year, over 327 million people visited America’s majestic national parks. All told, America’s outdoor recreation economy accounted for more than 2 percent of our GDP—and 5.2 million jobs—in 2017.
The Great American Outdoors Act won the support of more than 850 conservation groups, along with 43 sportsmen and sportswomen groups. It is the single greatest American conservation achievement since the presidency of Theodore Roosevelt.
The Wall Street Journal: National Parks Get Long-Awaited Overhaul
To preserve our parks, the law will provide $900 million each year in permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and will allocate $9.5 billion over 5 years to restore facilities and infrastructure in our national parks and public lands.
“Last night, I added it up: 5 presidents, 9 secretaries of the interior, and 10 secretaries of agriculture have worked on legislation to accomplish fully funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund, or enhancing our nation’s parks by addressing in the backlog,” Interior Secretary David Bernhardt said at the White House yesterday.
“Only one president has gotten that done.”
WATCH: “Conserving the grandeur and splendor of God’s creation.”
LEARN MORE: Restoring the majesty of America’s public lands
Press Secretary: ‘President Trump is working hard to save your healthcare’
President Donald Trump signed an executive order last night expanding access to telehealth services for millions of Americans—especially those living in rural communities.
“The Trump Administration has cut red tape allowing telehealth services for seniors and for other Americans,” Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said at today’s briefing. “Thirty-five percent of Medicare beneficiaries took advantage of the President’s reform.”
President Trump: “I’m taking action to ensure telehealth is here to stay”
Last night’s executive order also calls for more investments into Rural America’s communications infrastructure to better support telehealth. As a result, more Americans would have access to the kind of affordable, personalized care that puts the patient in control rather than the federal government.
“Democrats seek to deny Americans their healthcare freedom, but President Trump is working hard to save your healthcare,” McEnany said.
These telehealth expansions build on the work the Trump Administration has done during the pandemic to more than double the number of allowable telehealth services.
“We worked with the leaders of major health insurance companies to ensure coverage for the telehealth visits related to Coronavirus. We cut red tape to allow many services to be conducted by phone, rather than video, which is much simpler, providing a much easier option for many seniors in particular,” President Trump said.
“We allocated nearly $165 million through the CARES Act to support nearly 1,800 small rural hospitals who have done an incredible job, as well as $11.5 million to expand technical assistance for rural and underserved areas.”
Watch: More than 135 new services available through telehealth
Secretary Sonny Perdue: Rural America needs telehealth