Advisory committee to meet to discuss Title II project proposals

WENATCHEE - The Resource Advisory Committee for the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest will meet on two upcoming dates to discuss potential funding for projects that benefit watersheds and forest-related resources on national forest lands in Okanogan, Chelan, Kittitas, and Yakima Counties. Thirty-five projects will be reviewed by the committee.

Projects in Kittitas and Yakima counties will be reviewed on May 23, and projects for Chelan and Okanogan counties on May 30. Both meetings will start at 9 a.m. and end around 3:30 p.m. and will be held at the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest headquarters office downstairs meeting room at 215 Melody Lane in Wenatchee.

“Initially we had planned to have three advisory committee meetings,” said Deputy Forest Supervisor Erick Walker. “We received fewer project applications this year so we are able to consolidate review of all of the project proposals into two meetings instead of three. If additional time is required to complete selection and prioritization of projects, a third meeting will occur on June 13.”

The Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest has submitted 21 project proposals requesting Title II funding for toilet/outhouse replacements, burned fence repair, noxious weed control, trail maintenance and reconstruction, campground infrastructure improvements and repairs, abandoned vehicle and litter removal, road repair and stabilization work, and bulletin board and interpretive signs development.

Other projects include proposals from Chelan County and Okanogan County Noxious Weed Boards and Washington State University for noxious weed control, from Methow Valley Trails Collaborative for fuels reduction and trail work, from Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance, The Nature Conservancy, and Chelan County Natural Resource Department for trail system maintenance and restoration, from Leavenworth Winter Sports Club for Ski Hill improvement projects, and from Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust and Mid-Columbia Fisheries Group for campground maintenance and picnic shelter restoration projects.

“Many good projects have been proposed and a little over $990,000 in Title II funds are available,” Walker said. “Over the years, these funds have paid for hundreds of projects benefitting the national forest and have supported the public’s use and enjoyment of the national forest.”

During the past 18 years over $10 million in Title II funding has been allocated to projects on or adjacent to the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest in Okanogan, Chelan, Kittitas, and Yakima counties.

Advisory committee members represent a wide variety of citizen interests and are residents of each of the four counties within the two national forests. The committee’s funding recommendations will be forwarded to the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest Supervisor for final approval.   

Funding for these projects is through Title II of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000.

All committee meetings are open to the public.

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