Department Of Interior
|Office of the Secretary||
Contact: Pat Fisher, FWS
|For Immediate Release: January 27, 2004||
Secretary Norton Announces $14 Million in Grants to Tribes to Help Fund Fish and Wildlife Conservation Projects
(WASHINGTON) - Interior Secretary Gale Norton today announced that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is awarding 79 grants, totaling nearly $14 million, to help 60 federally recognized Indian tribes conserve and recover endangered, threatened and at-risk species and other wildlife on tribal lands.
The Service is awarding the
grants under two new programs, the Tribal Landowner Incentive Program
and Tribal Wildlife Grant Program. These programs are similar to cost-share
programs recently developed by the department to assist states, local
communities, private landowners and other partners undertake wildlife
Last year, for example, the
department provided $34.8 million in grants to states under the new
Landowner Incentive Program to assist private landowners in conserving
and restoring the habitat of endangered species and other at-risk plants
and animals on their property. The program was modeled after a successful
program implemented by President Bush in Texas when he was governor.
"Native Americans have
a unique relationship to and understanding of the land and its wildlife,"
Norton said. "As part of the President's overall Cooperative Conservation
Initiative, the Interior Department is providing these grants to build
on our partnership with the tribes to conserve tribal land and recover
the wildlife, especially those species that are in decline."
Of the $14 million, the Service
is providing about $4 million to federally recognized Indian tribes
to help fund 23 projects under TLIP. Contributions from tribes and other
partners raise the total value of these projects to $6.8 million. The
grants were chosen through a competitive process to address protection,
restoration and management of habitat to benefit at-risk species, including
federally listed endangered or threatened species and proposed or candidate
species. The maximum award under this program is $200,000 with a required
minimum 25-percent match from non-federal funds.
Meanwhile, about $10 million
will help fund 56 projects under TWG. Contributions from tribes and
other partners increase the total value of these projects to $12.4 million.
These grants are awarded to federally recognized Indian tribes to benefit
fish, wildlife and their habitat including non-game species. Although
matching funds are not required for these grants, they are considered
to be an indicator of a tribe's commitment. The maximum grant award
under this program is $250,000.
"Indian country harbors
vast pristine habitats, marked by a representation of an entire continental
array of fish and wildlife species," said Ira New Breast, executive
director of the Native American Fish and Wildlife Society. "The
two Service grant programs will work to further raise the capacity of
Indian people to meet the dynamic challenges facing sustainable Tribal
management of this country's fish and wildlife resources."
Examples of TLIP and TWG grants awarded today are as follows:
A complete list of grants by State follows. For additional information, please visit the Service's website at: http://www.fws.gov
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 95-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System, which encompasses 542 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 69 national fish hatcheries, 64 fishery resources offices and 81 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Aid Program, which distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.
The following lists can be
found on the DOI web page:
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