December 27, 2022 - On Thursday, December 22, Congress reauthorized the Ohio & Erie Canalway National Heritage Area for an additional 14 years to 2037 and increased the funding cap from $20 million to $22 million dollars as part of the passage of S.1942, the National Heritage Area Act.
S.1942 was advanced by the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and supported by Senator Sherrod Brown, Senator Rob Portman, Congressman Tim Ryan, Congressman Dave Joyce, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, Congresswoman Shontel Brown, Congressman Anthony Gonzalez and Congressman Bob Gibbs.
“Ohioans take great pride in our state’s historic role in building the Ohio & Erie Canal and connecting our state to the rest of the country,” said Senator Brown. “From Tuscarawas County to Cuyahoga County, the Ohio & Erie Canalway National Heritage Area draws millions of dollars to our state each year, supporting thousands of jobs. We owe it to all Ohioans and visitors to continue to support this treasure and I was proud to join my colleagues in ensuring this National Heritage Area is reauthorized to 2037.”
The reauthorization of the Ohio & Erie Canalway National Heritage Area provides long-term stability for the continued development and activation of the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail, construction of connector trails, preservation of historic buildings, educational & interpretive programming, and the conservation of natural areas.
“We are extremely grateful for the tremendous support of Senator Brown, Senator Portman, Congressman Ryan, Congressman Joyce, Congresswoman Kaptur, Congressman Gonzalez, Congresswoman Brown, Congressman Gibbs for the continued development of the Ohio & Erie Canalway, Towpath Trail and connector trails. With their incredible support, we will continue to share the natural, historical and recreational resources with the millions of residents and visitors to the Ohio & Erie Canalway,” said Dan Rice and Mera Cardenas, co-executive directors of the Ohio & Erie Canalway Association.
The Ohio & Erie Canalway National Heritage Area was designated by Congress in 1996 and celebrates the legacy of the Ohio & Erie Canal to the region and nation. Annually, more than 2.5 million users find their way to the iconic 101-mile Towpath Trail running through the heart of the Ohio & Erie Canalway.