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Nevada senators back $1.4 billion bill to help at-risk wildlife

bighorn sheep
Nevada Department of Wildlife
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Both Senators Catherine Cortez Masto and Jacky Rosen are cosponsoring the Recovering America's Wildlife Act, which would dedicate $1.4 billion annually to wildlife recovery efforts led by states and tribes.

The bill has 34 cosponsors, most of which are Republican, said the Nevada Wildlife Federation. Republican Mark Amodei and Democrats Dina Titus and Steven Horsford are among the 170 House supporters. 

If passed, $24 million annually would be sent to the Nevada Department of Wildlife to benefit more than 250 species in its action plan, including bighorn sheep and sage grouse.

Sponsor Message

“This is the most important piece of wildlife legislation we’ve seen in fifty years,” said Russell Kuhlman, executive director of the Nevada Wildlife Federation, in a media release. “The nation’s wildlife are in crisis. This bill will help Nevada’s vulnerable wildlife species including the sage grouse and desert tortoise while there is still time to make a difference. We are so grateful to Senator Cortez Masto for joining this bold, bipartisan effort to protect our wildlife heritage.” 

Tony Wasley, director of the Nevada Department of Wildlife, said the bill would "set a new course" for the state's fish and wildlife.

The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act would send $97.5 million to the nation's 574 federally-recognized tribes, including tribes spanning more than a million acres in Nevada.

According to NDOW, both bills will go to a floor vote, reconciliation ( S.2372 identifies a funding source; H.R.2773 does not), and then to President Joe Biden’s desk to be signed into law.

Kristen DeSilva (she/her) is the online editor for Nevada Public Radio. She oversees and writes State of Nevada’s online and social media content.