More than a quarter of a million dollars in new grants have been awarded through the Lake and River Enhancement program as part of the DNR Division of Fish and Wildlife. The LARE program looks to fund biological, engineering, construction and watershed land treatment projects throughout the state, and to that end, they have awarded $768,500 in grants for the care of Indiana’s water bodies.
Mark Reiter, director of DNR Fish and Wildlife, said the LARE program has focused on reducing sediment and nutrient inputs into water for 25 years, and he said the grants continue that tradition while simultaneously enhancing aquatic habitat and recreational potential for Indiana’s lakes and rivers.
The projects involve 14 counties and more than 25 different lakes or rivers. Local sponsors submitted the applications and commit to sharing a portion of the total cost. DNR’s share is generated by the Lake and River Enhancement fee paid annually by boat owners to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
The Fish Lake Watershed in LaPorte was awarded $38,000 to go toward a watershed diagnostic study, and in Marshall County, construction funds for Lake Galbraith or Lake Gilbert were awarded in the amount of $50,000. Trail Creek in LaPorte was also awarded $65,000 for an engineering feasibility study.
Nineteen other projects throughout the state received funds as well.