On June 30, 2013, Governor Corbett signed the 2013-14 state budget, which included critical funding for conservation programs.
In addition to maintaining full funding for the Keystone Recreation Park & Conservation Fund, the general fund budget includes $2.25 million for the state’s Heritage Areas Program and $3.3 million in restored funding for conservation districts, which is in addition to the $5 million the districts will receive from the Act 13 Impact Fee. The budget also includes increased support for the Department of Environmental Protection.
The Department of Conservation & Natural Resources will maintain a budget of approximately $300 million, which is about the same as last fiscal year. DCNR’s cut (share) of the Oil and Gas Lease Fund will rise from $69 million to about $106 million and that increase will not require the state to lease any more state forest land (though not all leased lands have been developed to date).