Funding proposals for 2016 are now being accepted through the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program, with an anticipated $3.6 million available to applicants. The program – a joint effort of the Michigan departments of Natural Resources, Environmental Quality, and Agriculture and Rural Development – is part of a statewide initiative launched in 2014 to help prevent and control invasive species in Michigan.
Program handbook, information webinar
The 2016 grant program handbook, outlining focus areas and information on how to apply is available on the DNR website www.michigan.gov/dnr-grants. A live webinar explaining the 2016 grant process and focus areas is scheduled for Thursday, May 12, from 2 to 3 p.m. Interested applicants can register for the webinar at www.michigan.gov/invasivespecies. A recorded version of the webinar also will be available at this website after May 12.
The Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program supports projects throughout the state that prevent, detect, manage and eradicate invasive species on the ground and in the water. Total grant funding is set by the Legislature and the governor during the annual budget cycle.
Early program successes
In the first two years of the program, more than $7.6 million in grant funding has gone to support invasive species education, control and management through 16 Cooperative Invasive Species Management Areas, as well as targeted projects to control invasive Phragmites, Eurasian watermilfoil, European frog-bit, feral swine and oak wilt.
“Preventing invasive species from being introduced to or gaining a foothold in Michigan is of the greatest importance to protecting our world-class natural resources and outdoor recreation opportunities,” said DNR Director Bill Moritz. “We are eager to provide this vital funding to our community partners who are just as strongly committed to battling these land and water invaders.”
Administered by the DNR, the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program targets four key objectives:
•Preventing new introductions of invasive species through outreach and education.
•Monitoring for new invasive species as well as expansions of current invasive species.
•Managing and controlling key colonized species in a strategic manner.
•Responding to and conducting eradication efforts for new findings and range expansions.
Important program dates
Local, federal and tribal units of government, nonprofit organizations and universities may apply for funding to support invasive species projects conducted in Michigan. For this 2016 funding cycle, pre-proposals will be accepted through June 15 and requested full proposals must be submitted by Sept. 15.
Grant requests for 2016 projects can range from a minimum of $25,000 to a maximum of $400,000. Applicants must commit to provide at least 10 percent of the total project cost in the form of a local match. Proposals with match levels above 10 percent will receive higher ranking.
Competitive applications will outline clear objectives, propose significant ecological benefits, demonstrate diverse collaboration and show strong community support.
Learn more about this and other grant opportunities on the DNR website www.michigan.gov/dnr-grants.
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.