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LibbyMt.com > News > July 2009 > Kootenai NF to get $3.5 Million for trail & facility projects

Kootenai NF to get $3.5 Million for trail & facility projects
Funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
by Kootenai National Forest
July 24, 2009

Kootenai Forest Supervisor Paul Bradford announced that several projects on the forest totaling $3.5 million have been funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) for forest facilities and trails.

Bradford’s announcement follows that of Secretary Tom Vilsack recently that 191 projects, funded at more than $274 million, are located on Forest Service land in more than 32 states.

"The Recovery Act projects we’re announcing today are central to creating jobs and building a better, stronger economy in the future," said Secretary Vilsack. "These projects exemplify President Obama’s commitment to sustainability, reducing our environmental footprint, and increasing energy efficiency, which will benefit the 178 million people who visit the National Forests each year, while generating additional tourism and stimulating local economies."

The projects on the Kootenai Forest include forest facilities and trails and provide protection of watershed health and other natural resources. The Forest Service Trails System provides access to a wide diversity of users including hikers, horseback riders, mountain bikers, cross-country skiers, snowmobilers, and all-terrain vehicle enthusiasts. Trail maintenance includes protecting soils and reducing erosion, along with clearing vegetation, controlling invasive species, and removing downed trees. Repairs and upgrades to trail head and parking areas will improve access and safety for trail users.

There is currently a large backlog of maintenance needs for public facilities. Maintenance needs were identified through extensive studies of specific public facilities needed to support the primary outdoor activities that are best provided on the National Forests and grasslands.

"This is a great opportunity to complete maintenance on projects that otherwise would have been deferred due to lack of funding. We expect these projects to create jobs, and result in substantial improvements to facilities and trails on the Kootenai National Forest," said Bradford. "Our partners and private sector contractors will be instrumental in completing this work."

These facilities and trails projects are in addition to the fire/fuels projects that were announced in May for approximately $3.5 million and the $7.5 million in June for road maintenance and watershed restoration work.

Specific projects on the forest include:
Historic building preservation
Maintenance on recreation facilities
Installation of bear resistant food storage facilities
Reconstruction of the McGillivray Recreation Area
Dock replacement
Trail maintenance
Trail bridge replacement

The work related to these projects funded by the ARRA will occur over the next two years and will be awarded in accordance with federal procurement regulations. The work will be awarded through contracts and partnerships and should create employment opportunities in Lincoln and Sanders Counties.

For more information, please contact Willie Sykes at 406-283-7694 or Paul Stantus at 406-283-7766. The website www.fs.fed.us/ also contains information about ARRA specific projects.

Related Links
  • www.fs.fed.us/r1/kootenai - Kootenai National Forest
  • LibbyMt.com > News > July 2009 > Kootenai NF to get $3.5 Million for trail & facility projects
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