The Sustainable Funding for Natural Resources interim committee, which is co-chaired by State Representative Paul Bell of Newton, heard last week that an additional $150 million per year is needed to support Iowa’s natural resources. The goal of the committee is to find a sustainable funding for our natural resources needs, including parks and trails; soil and water conservation; and fish, wildlife, and other natural areas.

The committee also heard from legislative colleagues from Missouri, Minnesota, Michigan, and North Carolina on how they provide sustainable funding for natural resources. The committee hired Iowa State University’s Center for Agriculture and Rural Development to conduct a comprehensive review, analysis, and compilation of existing state and regional data concerning the economic impact and benefits of natural resources in Iowa. The committee will meet again December 11th and make recommendations to the full Legislature.