Soil and Water Conservation Commission eyes making grant program permanent

Idaho News
By Brad Carlson; Capital Press Concrete re-lining work on the upper New York Canal in central Boise. Boise Project Board of Control BOISE — The Idaho Soil and Water Conservation Commission plans to ask the Legislature during next year's session to make a temporary grant program permanent. The 2022 Legislature restarted the commission’s Water Quality Program for Agriculture by approving $5 million. The commission this year issued grants for 47 projects worth about $18.5 million when matching funds are included, said Delwyne Trefz, the administrator. The commission received 93 grant applications seeking $12 million. The projects were valued at more than $30 million when matching funds are included, he said. “The state was going to get a good bang for its buck,” Trefz said. “We’re going to go back and…
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With grant award, Orofino plans water system upgrade

Idaho News
By Kathy Hedberg; The Lewiston Tribune OROFINO — The city of Orofino will begin a long-range planning project to upgrade the city’s water distribution system following the recent award of a $110,000 grant from the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality. The grant is part of a $2 million fund from the American Rescue Plan Act directed to DEQ from Gov. Brad Little. “It’s old infrastructure on the water side,” said Orofino Mayor Sean Simmons. “These funds will be going to inflow and infiltration studies on our collection system. Orofino is fairly old … so we work on it a little bit each year and do what we can.” Simmons said part of the problem is that when it rains in the spring, there is so much additional water that goes…
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Idaho Seeking $2M Worth Of Project Ideas To Reduce Phosphorous In Lake Coeur d’Alene

Idaho News
By Samantha Wohlfeil, Inlander Idaho's Department of Environmental Quality will soon be awarding $2 million to projects that will reduce phosphorous on Coeur d'Alene Lake. The funding from the state is part of Gov. Brad Little's "Building Idaho's Future" plan. The projects are intended to prevent the lake from reaching a dangerous tipping point where heavy metal contamination that has mostly remained in sediments could become suspended in the water column due to a shift in the water chemistry. Like much of North Idaho, the lake faces issues with contamination deposited during decades of silver and lead mining in the region. To be eligible, projects must include on-the-ground reductions in phosphorous, be located in Idaho within the watersheds that drain into Coeur d'Alene Lake, and have community support. Projects on…
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