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Funding Available for Projects to Benefit Hubbard County Watersheds

By February 24, 2022 March 18th, 2022 No Comments

Are you tired of winter yet? Are you dreaming of springtime days in the grass, summertime at the water’s edge?

Our watersheds are key to our way of life in Northwest Minnesota, and the Northwest Minnesota Foundation is proud to support of efforts of several lake associations throughout our region.

One of them – the Hubbard County Coalition of Lake Associations – is currently accepting applications to support projects that benefit the watersheds that impact Hubbard County.

An example of the impact of this grant opportunity can be found by reviewing a previously funded project: an aquatic vegetation survey that was performed in July 2021 through the Kabekona Lake Association.

Was this project beneficial?

Read the following excerpt from the grant report:

The most important finding of this survey was that no invasive aquatic plants were observed. Furthermore, we learned that Kabekona Lake appears to be a healthy lake with a diverse population of native aquatic plants. … There were 22 different types of native plants found across the sampling area.

This was the first professional aquatic vegetation survey to be conducted on Kabekona Lake since 2005. The grant report noted that the Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center recommends such a study for this lake every 3 to 5 years. The lake association reported plans to establish its own aquatic vegetation lake monitoring program and stated its desire to follow the 3- to 5-year recommendation for conducting a professional survey in the future.

Unfortunately, the spread of aquatic invasive species continues throughout lakes in our region. Studies such as these aid in the prevention of their further spread by monitoring for potential early detection and any needed intervention.

About the Hubbard County Coalition of Lake Associations:

The HC COLA Charitable Fund provides financial support for charitable and educational programs, projects and activities that facilitate cooperation among member lake associations and to assist in encouraging environmentally sustainable use of lakes and watersheds that protect, preserve and enhance the quality of area lakes and their environs including funding for:

  • Research, studies or projects on water quality, and shoreland development, aquatic invasive species (AIS) prevention, and disseminating information thereof to member associations and the general public.
  • Developing and presenting guidelines concerning the development, and preservation of the rivers, lakes, shorelands and other lands to agencies of the government, business and private individuals in order to bring about appropriate action for the effective use of these valuable natural resources.
  • Support of acquisition of property for sustainable public use, e.g. Conservation Easements.
  • Support for the establishment of individual lake association educational and charitable funds.
  • Other charitable and educational activities that support the HC COLA and associated lake associations.

What does this grant opportunity fund?

Eligible projects include, but are not limited to restoration of critical shoreline habitat, buffer strips, rain gardens, shoreline erosion, redirect storm water run-off, AIS prevention, vegetation mapping, and education strategies in cooperation with shoreline restoration projects, public awareness, specialized sampling research, and limited support for scientific studies.

Eligible projects can be used as a local match for Clean Water Legacy Amendment grants or Board of Soil and Water Resources (BSWR) grants.

Is a match required?

For every $1 contributed by HC COLA Charitable Fund, applicant must match $1 toward the project. Matches can be comprised of volunteer labor, in-kind services, donated materials, and/or cash. In-kind match of labor / volunteers can be estimated at $12.00 per hour for unskilled activities.

How can I learn more?

The press release announcing the open grant round can be read HERE.

The full Application Guide for this grant opportunity can be found on our Open Grant Rounds page, found HERE.

Please note that the application deadline for this grant is April 15th.