Wisconsin gets portion of federal CCI’ grant dollars

Associate Editor

Washington U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) Secretary Gale
Norton announced that government agencies, conservation groups, and
individuals will receive $21 million in grants under the Bush
administration’s “Cooperative Conservation Initiative.” It’s the
second outlay of funding through this program in as many years.

For Wisconsin, it will mean just over $200,000, matched by about
$550,000 from “partners,” for 16 projects in the state. Most of
those will be administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
(USFWS), which along with the Bureau of Land Management and
National Park Service, oversees the grants.

According to the USFWS, “The Cooperative Conservation Initiative
challenge cost-share grants are part of a commitment by the Bush
administration to support cooperative efforts. Over the past three
years, the Interior Department has provided more than $1.3 billion
in grants to states, tribes, local governments, and private

The CCI includes programs aimed at restoring, protecting, and
enhancing wild resources in the nation, Norton said during a

Last year, $12.9 million in federal grants were authorized
through the CCI. With this year’s federal grant funding, coupled
with matching funds this year and last year, total program funding
is at about $88 million, Norton said.

Hugh Vickery, of the Interior Department, said the CCI grants
fit well with the department theory that “Empowering people on the
ground’ to do the work is the best thing to do.” Priorities for
projects include improving wetlands and battling exotic

This year’s CCI projects include more than 1,100 partners in 43
states, and will conserve, restore, or enhance more than 560,000
acres; 377 projects were approved nationwide.

The following projects were approved in Wisconsin, all through
the USFWS:

$5,000 Restore fen and wet prairie, Fox River National Wildlife
Refuge; $2,500 federal funding, $2,500 partner contribution
(including Friends of Horicon NWR and River Crossing Charter

$40,000 Restore wetlands, Fox River NWR; $20,000 federal,
$20,000 partner (Friends of Horicon NWR and the Wisconsin Waterfowl

$40,000 Restore dry prairie and oak savanna, Fox River NWR;
$20,000 federal, $20,000 partners (including Friends of Horicon
NWR, River Crossing Charter School, and the DNR).

$4,000 Restore native prairie habitat for upland-nesting ducks
and other wildlife; $2,000 federal, $2,000 partners (including
Beaver Dam Charter School and the Wisconsin DNR).

$4,000 Remove woody vegetation, Horicon NWR; $2,000 federal,
$2,000 partners (including Beaver Dam Charter School, Friends of
Horicon NWR, and Don Franke, Ron Hansen, and Joe Bunkoske).

$309,365 Restore stream in Vernon County, La Crosse Fisheries
Research Office; $25,000 federal, $284,365 partners (including
Hillsboro Watershed, Land and Water Conservation Department,
landowners, Middle Kickapoo River Watershed, Trout Unlimited, and
the U.S. Department of Agriculture).

$29,397 Restore stream in Upper Iowa River watershed, La Crosse
Fisheries Research Office; $13,880 federal, $15,517 partners
(including Hawkeye Fly Fishing Association, the Iowa Department of
Agriculture and Land Stewardship, the Iowa DNR, landowners, and
Trout Unlimited).

$89375 Restore Kickapoo watershed stream; $20,000 federal,
$69,375 partners (including Trout Unlimited, the U.S. Department of
Ag, the Vernon County Conservation Alliance, the Vernon County
LWCD, the West Fork Sportsmen’s Club, and the Wisconsin Department
of Agriculture).

$4,000 Restore grassland habitat on waterfowl production areas,
Leopold Wetland Management District; $2,000 federal, $2,000 River
Crossing Charter School.

$13,000 Restore oaks in Broadhead Barrens Management Complex,
Necedah NWR; $6,500 federal, $6,500 Wisconsin DNR.

$20,000 Restore tall grass prairie, St. Croix Wetland Management
District; $10,000 federal, $10,000 Wisconsin DNR.

$41,000 Control woody vegetation, St. Croix Wetland Management
District; $20,000 federal, $21,000 Wisconsin DNR.

$5,800 Control invasive species, Trempealeau NWR; $1,500
federal, $4,300 partners (including Friends of Upper Mississippi
River Refuges and the Trempealeau NWR).

$24,000 Enhance streams on Heuer/Christen properties, Upper Miss
NWR-La Crosse District; $10,500 federal, $13,500 partners
(including Doug Heuer and Steve Christen, La Crosse County
Community Service, La Crosse County Land and Conservation
Department, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, and town of

$35,400 Reduce sediment load, Whittlesey Creek NWR; $3,500
federal, $31,900 Bayfield County Land and Conservation

$8,000 Install engineered log jams, Whittlesey Creek NWR; $4,000
federal, $4,000 Trout Unlimited.

One project will be completed in conjunction with the National
Park Service. That’s a $86,950 project to “restore prairie on sites
with high susceptibility to spotted knapweed,” St. Croix National
Scenic Riverway.

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