USFWS FY2018 Budget Justification Cuts Funding to Migratory Bird Management and Landscape Conservation Cooperative Programs

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) recently released its Budget Justification for fiscal year 2018. Among other items, the document outlines the budget for the Migratory Bird Management’s North American Waterfowl Management Plan/Joint Venture Activities programs. The proposed funding level for these programs will be about $10.8 million – $2.4 million less than than fiscal year 2017 Continuing Resolution Baseline. Per the budget justification, “This funding will adequately support 18 geographically-designated JVs…In order to fund higher priorities, the Service proposes to eliminate direct funding support for the three species-specific JV partnerships in FY2018 (black duck, sea duck, and Arctic goose).”

Furthermore, funding for Cooperative Landscape Conservation and Science Support (LCC) activities will be eliminated to save funds for “high priority, long-standing programs”. This would result in the elimination of 84 staff positions and reduced funding for Joint Venture staff and partners. Grant funds from Cooperative Landscape Conservation and Science Support were used in the past for various planning efforts, such as climate vulnerability assessments and adaptation plans. In this case, USFWS encourages states and other entities to assume the management of LCCs.

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