LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate on Wednesday approved legislation allocating $27.9 million from the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund (NRTF) to natural resources improvement and acquisition projects across the state.
The trust fund is supported by interest earned on funds generated from the development of state-owned mineral rights.
“The Natural Resources Trust Fund provides valuable support to numerous projects throughout the 37th Senate District, and the entire state,” said Sen. Wayne Schmidt, R-Traverse City. “With these additional funds, parks and recreational areas will see welcome improvements, and residents and visitors of the northern Lower Peninsula and Upper Peninsula will be able to better enjoy our state’s natural resources.”
Eight projects in Antrim, Chippewa, Emmet, Grand Traverse, and Mackinac counties were among those receiving funds. The projects benefitting from the NRTF grants are:
- Antrim: Milton Township will receive $464,300 for Waterfront Park.
- Chippewa: Superior Township will receive $96,200 for Riverview Park.
- Emmet: The Department of Natural Resources Parks and Recreation division will receive $200,000 for an addition to Petoskey State Park.
- Emmet: Littlefield Township will receive $167,800 for a Hay Lake Water Access site.
- Grand Traverse: Traverse City will receive $45,000 to improve Clancy Park.
- Grand Traverse: Garfield Charter Township will receive $100,000 to improve the Boardman Valley Nature Preserve.
- Grand Traverse: The DNR Wildlife Division will receive $2,475,000 to acquire land from Petobego SGA.
- Mackinac: The city of St. Ignace will receive $280,000 for a Little Bear East Recreation Park development.
House Bill 5377 authorizes the trust fund to spend the $27.9 million for a total of 70 land acquisition and recreational development projects statewide.
The NRTF uses constitutionally restricted funds to provide financial assistance to local governments and the Department of Natural Resources to purchase land or rights of land for public recreation or protection of land because of its environmental importance or its scenic beauty. It also assists in the appropriate development of land for public outdoor recreation.
HB 5377 now goes to Gov. Rick Snyder for signing.