BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Yellowstone Association and the Yellowstone Park Foundation are joining forces to become a new nonprofit organization to better support the needs of Yellowstone National Park.

The Billings Gazette reports the merger of the two groups would create a single nonprofit of more than 50,000 supporters. The joint operations of the new organization are expected to launch by March 2016 and be fully in effect by February 2017. The Yellowstone Park Foundation has been the park's official fundraising partner for nearly 20 years.

During that the time, the foundation has raised more than $100 million and funded more than 325 projects. The Yellowstone Association serves as the park's educational partner and has provided more than $59 million in aid to Yellowstone National Park..