In the battle to fight Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS), St. Louis County is about to put it's money where it's mouth is.  At a recent board meeting, county officials voted to approve the distribution of $661,962 in funds to projects that will prevent the introduction and limit the spread of AIS in lakes and rivers in St. Louis County.

Here is a breakdown of the spending plans:

  • North St. Louis Soil and Water Conservation District will receive $398,600 to manage watercraft inspections, decontaminations, and public education on Bear Island, Birch, Burntside, Crane, Ely, Gilbert-Pit, Johnson, Kabetogama, One Pine, Pelican, Shagawa, and Vermilion Lakes.
  • Wildlife Forever will receive $98,000 for marketing efforts for their Clean Drain Dry Initiative campaign aimed at public awareness and education, and behavioral change.
  • Vermilion Lake Association will receive $62,537 for continued watercraft inspections and cleaning, public awareness and education, habitat evaluation and threat assessment, early detection and response efforts, and partnership development.
  • City of Babbitt will receive $32,625 for the installation, maintenance, and partnership for a clean, drain, dry, dispose (CD3) station at the Birch Lake public access.
  • Burntside Lake Association will receive $25,100 for continued training of boat inspectors, promote the use of boat cleaning stations, improve public awareness and education about AIS, build early detection capabilities, and partnership development.
  • Canosia Township will receive $25,000 for watercraft inspections and public education on Pike Lake and Caribou Lake.
  • Grand Lake Township will receive $20,100 for watercraft inspections on Caribou Lake.

In collateral released announcing the funding, St. Louis County described the process this way:

Each year, through the AIS Prevention Aid Program, the state legislature allocates funding to counties to be used to prevent the introduction or limit the spread of AIS. Through an application and proposal process, St. Louis County has sought out organizations to address AIS issues with multi-disciplinary, integrated solutions based on science, related to natural resources sustainability, and social and economic concerns. The County supports projects that address one or more of the seven categories and associated actions outlined in the St. Louis County AIS Prevention Plan.

To learn more, click here.

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