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Highlands Conservation Act

AMC supports the Highlands Conservation Act, a land conservation program funded through the Federal Land and Water Conservation Fund that protects the highest valued conservation areas in the Mid-Atlantic Highlands of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.

In November 2004, the landmark Highlands Conservation Act was passed. The Highlands Conservation Act “recognizes the importance of the water, forest, agricultural, wildlife, recreational, and cultural resources of the Highlands region, and the national significance of the Highlands region to the United States.”

The Highlands Conservation Act authorizes Congress to spend up to $10 million a year in federal matching funds for land preservation and protection in the Highlands states (PA, NJ, NY, CT), as well to spend $1 million a year for USDA Forest Service research and technical assistance programs.

In 2014, Congress allowed the Highlands program to expire by failing to advance legislation to re-authorize the program.

In 2018, AMC celebrated passage of H.R.1281/S.1627 to reauthorize the Highlands Conservation Act through 2021, concluding a multi-year effort in partnership with elected officials and partner organizations. AMC continues to advocate for yearly funding for the Highlands program through the Land & Water Conservation Fund.