Pennsylvania’s 2023-24 budget provides $112 million to maintain and improve infrastructure in parks and forests, the largest such investment in decades.

Said Pennsylvania Parks & Forests Foundation President Marci Mowery: “Two-thirds of Pennsylvanians agree that state government should prioritize public lands infrastructure and we are grateful to see … these substantive investments in public lands. Not only do these places support a robust outdoor economy, they are important for the physical, mental and emotional health of the citizens of the Commonwealth while also providing a diverse array of environmental benefits, from helping to clean the air we breathe to reducing the impacts of flooding.”

Additionally, the budget proposes $2.8 million to support operating needs for the management and safety of public lands and the creation of a new Office of Outdoor Recreation.

“We hired Pennsylvania’s first Director of Outdoor Recreation in 2021, and less than two years later, we are the largest of the 18 other states that have an Office of Outdoor Recreation,” noted the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Cindy Adams Dunn. “We see the outdoors as a means to transform health and wellness in the Commonwealth, and as a way to create meaningful economic opportunities in our communities. This is an exciting step forward for the future of our outdoors.”