Governor Gregoire Announces $103.5 Million in Grants for Recreation, Protection of Farmland, Wildlife Habitat —

Governor Gregoire Announces $103.5 Million in Grants for Recreation, Protection of Farmland, Wildlife Habitat

PRESS RELEASE; Jun 13, 2007, Office of Governor Chris Gregoire

Office of Governor Chris Gregoire
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - June 13, 2007
Contact:  Governor's Office, 360-902-4111

OLYMPIA – Governor Chris Gregoire today announced the recipients of $103.5 million in grants for building new recreational opportunities and protecting valuable farmland and wildlife habitat.

“This is an investment that will help maintain Washington as a great place to live and work,” said Governor Gregoire. “It goes a long way to provide the parks, trails and other recreational opportunities that we need to stay active and healthy. It also protects our land, air and water, which is essential to our quality of life and to our economy.”

The grants, funded through the Washington Interagency Committee for Outdoor Recreation (IAC), will support 159 projects in 30 counties. This is the largest award in the committee’s 43-year history. Projects range from $48,000 to purchase park land to over $4 million to preserve critical wildlife habitat. The state grants are matched by local resources and donations.

Grants were awarded to projects in the following counties:

    * Asotin County $99,536
    * Benton County $600,740
    * Chelan County $797,931
    * Clallam County $2,299,349
    * Clark County $6,682,426
    * Cowlitz County $388,387
    * Douglas County $1,075,702
    * Grant County $1,803,000
    * Grays Harbor County $2,058,641
    * Island County $2,185,912
    * Jefferson County $1,568,981
    * King County $16,565,354
    * Kitsap County $8,046,954
    * Kittitas County $7,769,714
    * Klickitat County $608,002
    * Lincoln County $345,803
    * Mason County $4,082,375
    * Okanogan County $10,729,150
    * Pacific County $2,045,790
    * Pend Oreille County $3,661,966
    * Pierce County $2,802,007
    * San Juan County $1,871,402
    * Skagit County $3,015,938
    * Skamania County $76,297
    * Snohomish County $2,903,841
    * Spokane County $3,519,232
    * Thurston County $7,620,547
    * Walla Walla County $461,604
    * Whatcom County $753,379
    * Yakima County $6,245,029


For details about the projects, please visit the IAC web site: http://www.iac.wa.gov/documents/Press_Releases/wwwrp_alea_lwcf_bfp-state_funding.pdf.

“These grants are matched by over $105 million in local resources, bringing the total investment in outdoor recreation and conservation to more than $208.5 million statewide,” said Val Ogden of Vancouver, chair of the IAC. “That’s a significant contribution to ensuring Washington remains a vibrant place for people, families and businesses.”

This year, applications were received for over $149 million for 251 projects in four grant programs: The Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program, the Aquatic Lands Enhancement Account, the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund and the Boating Facilities Program. Grant applicants underwent a rigorous evaluation by expert panels and ranked against projects statewide to ensure only the best projects received funding.

The large grant award reflects $100 million in funding approved by the Legislature for the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program. The program was created by the Legislature in 1990 in response to increasing public demand for outdoor recreation land and growing concerns about loss of wildlife habitat. Since then, the IAC has supported over 900 projects totaling more than $544 million in that program, resulting in thousands of acres of valuable wildlife habitat and some of the state's best recreation lands being placed into public protection.

The Interagency Committee for Outdoor Recreation was established in 1964 by voter initiative to finance recreation and conservation projects throughout Washington.

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Note: Beginning July 1, the name of the Interagency Committee for Outdoor Recreation will change to the Recreation and Conservation Funding Board, to better reflect the work of the agency and to be more easily understood by the public.

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