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Sinnemahoning Creek Restoration Grants Available
From Monessen, PA
Harrisburg, PA - The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) has approved a program to award grants of up to $100,000 to projects to restore the Sinnemahoning Creek Watershed, which was damaged in a June 30, 2006, train derailment in rural Norwich Township, McKean County. The action was taken at yesterday’s quarterly meeting.
The program stems from a settlement with Norfolk Southern as a result of 31 rail cars derailing and spilling sodium hydroxide into Big Fill Run, Sinnemahoning-Portage Creek and the Driftwood Branch of the Sinnemahoning Creek. Under the settlement, Norfolk Southern agreed to pay the Commonwealth $7.35 million as restitution for environmental damages. The PFBC received $3.675 million of the settlement and must use the funds to develop and implement projects that benefit fishing, boating and aquatic resources in Cameron, Elk, McKean or Potter counties.
The PFBC’s primary emphasis will be on projects in the Sinnemahoning Creek Watershed, upstream of the confluence with the First Fork of Sinnemahoning Creek. Projects that will be considered for funding include, for example, acid mine drainage abatement; habitat protection, enhancement and restoration; and the acquisition of properties for public fishing and access.
The grant application and project guidelines will be made available to the public through the PFBC website by the end of October. The first round of grants will be awarded in spring of 2009 for projects to be started in summer of 2009.
A complete copy of the meeting schedule and the full agenda can be found on the PFBC’s web site at www.fishandboat.com/minutes.htm.
Posted on: 2008/10/8 13:32
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