The elections are less than three weeks away, and this year on the Iowa ballot will be an opportunity to invest in the future of our state’s natural resources. In the previous two legislative sessions, state legislators have approved this constitutional amendment being placed on the ballot on November 2nd.

The amendment would, for the first time in Iowa’s history, establish a constitutionally protected trust fund to preserve Iowa’s natural resources and outdoor recreational opportunities.  Iowa’s distinct character and our quality of life are directly tied to our state’s rich natural resources.

Specifically, the amendment will create the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust Fund which will provide a permanent, reliable and accountable revenue source to improve water quality and natural areas in Iowa, including fish and wildlife habitat and parks, trails, in addition to aiding in conservation funding for agricultural soils and restoring wetlands to protect against future flooding.

Recent data from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources shows that 53% of Iowa’s water sources rate “poor,” and Iowa currently loses an average of five tons of soil per acre each year due to erosion.

Funding to protect our natural resources remains at near historic lows.  As of today, Iowa ranks 47th out of 50 states in funding for conservation, despite the fact that more than 27,000 Iowa jobs are supported by outdoor recreation.  By passing this amendment in November, we can prevent the permanent loss of land, water and wildlife and retain Iowa’s quality of life and natural beauty so our children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren can enjoy the state the same way we do.

Remember to vote on November 2nd