MERA receives national recognition

Sean Chambers and his daughter Chloe on Saturday, June 1, 2019, install a map at the Mount Emily Recreation Area near La Grande. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department’s Recreational Trails Program is accepting applications through June 15, 2021, from organizations and local governments to build or improve public trails.

SALEM — Organizations, land managers and local governments looking to build, expand or improve public trails have until June 15 to seek grants through the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department’s Recreational Trails Program.

The federally funded reimbursement grant program provides matching grants to construct, expand or improve public trails for motorized and non-motorized use. The program is accepting grant applications for the 2021 grant cycle. Applicants must submit a letter of intent via oprdgrants.org by April 30, and applications are due June 15.An optional webinar is set April 15, 9:30-11:30 a.m. to provide information on the program and how to navigate the application process. Register at the Recreational Trails Program web page.

Approximately $1.6 million in grant funds are available for land or easement acquisitions, safety and education, trail assessment for accessibility or maintenance construction, heavy restoration, trailhead facilities and water trails.

The grant program is open to local governments, park districts, state and federal agencies, tribal governments, other public land managers and nonprofits.

Information about the program, including the grant manual, application instructions and program schedule, is on the Recreational Trails Program web page: www.oregon.gov/oprd/GRA/pages/GRA-rtp.aspx.

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