Pennsylvania Governor Rendell Announces $44 Million Investiment in Recreation and Conservation Projects

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Shenango River gets part of the grants promised by Governor RendellHARRISBURG  — Residents will benefit from the investment of nearly $44 million for 316 conservation and recreation projects that are designed to help revitalize communities and protect natural resources, Governor Edward G. Rendell said today.

“The health and vitality of our communities is reflected in the quality of their parks and trails, access to rivers, open spaces and outdoor recreation opportunities,” Governor Rendell said. “This round of grants will fund hundreds of projects to help preserve and enhance those natural amenities.”

Funding for the grants comes from the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Keystone Fund, which is generated from a portion of the realty transfer tax, Growing Greener I and II and the ATV/Snowmobile Fund.

The grants will fund a variety of projects, including 66 miles of trails, 4,341 acres of open space, 10 swimming pools, 135 community parks and 73 planning projects for regional efforts, parks, greenways and trails.

Some examples of projects include:

  • More than $2.1 million for projects in the 12 counties in the north central region that make up the Pennsylvania Wilds, providing support for important park and trail infrastructure improvements that will enhance recreation opportunities for area residents and make communities in the region attractive places for economic investments by the private sector. Included is $120,000 for ATV trail rehabilitation and the addition of several miles in the Allegheny National Forest and $45,200 to the Forest County Snowmobile Club for snow grooming equipment to maintain 75 miles of trails;
  • A grant of $42,500 to the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and $100,000 to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation for workshops and technical assistance related to planting trees and shrubs as buffers along streams;
  • A $100,000 grant to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy for work in large and special landscapes in the South Mountain area in south central Pennsylvania; $300,000 to the Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor for the Lehigh Valley Greenways initiative, and $25,000 to the Delaware Highlands Conservancy for conservation education and outreach for the Poconos Forest and Waters approach;
  • To help protect open space in Chester County, $1.6 million to the Natural Lands Trust to acquire 112 acres in Franklin Township; and
  • For the development of boat launches and access along the Beaver and Shenango rivers, $45,000 to Lawrence County.

For a complete list of grants by county, visit: www.dcnr.state.pa.us and click on “Grants.”