Grant Seeking to Improve Watershed Clears Hurdle

Tuesday’s preliminary vote on the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council’s 2016 funding package included a grant that seeks to improve the Shell Rock River Watershed District.

Included in the package was a $1.2 million grant to the Watershed District for the next phase in their Watershed Habitat Restoration Program.

The funding request will go toward three components: protection, restoration and enhancement. Projects reportedly include the establishment of wetland basins, re-establishment of native vegetation, treatment to manage rough fish species and key targeted land acquisitions. The district said projects in the Habitat Restoration Program will create essential habitat, benefiting fish, waterfowl and wildlife populations.

The LSOHC will meet in December to make its final recommendations to the Legislature. The recommendations will then be moved through the Minnesota House and Senate in separate bills, coming together at the end of the 2016 legislative session.

“We’re thankful the council has seen the work that we have been doing and wants to continue their partnership with us,” Director of Field Operations Andy Henschel said in a press release. “Through the hard work of our community and staff, our watershed is being restored and transformed. That wouldn’t be possible without the contribution of the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council.”

The LSOHC was established by the Minnesota State Legislature to provide annual funding recommendations from funds gathered by the Outdoor Heritage Fund.

© 2015 Shell Rock River Watershed District, 305 S 1st Avenue, Albert Lea, MN 56007