DNR Recreational Trails Program grants available

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources has begun accepting grant applications from private organizations, and municipal, state and federal agencies for the Fiscal Year 2006 grant round of the federal Recreational Trails Program.

The Recreational Trails Program is funded through the Federal Highway Administration as part of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). A minimum of $900,000 is expected in this cycle.

Eligible project categories include construction, maintenance, restoration and development of new trails. All grants are awarded on a reimbursement basis; a minimum 20 percent match is required for projects. Applications must be postmarked by June 12.

To assist potential project sponsors with the application process, Department of Natural Resources staff is planning grant application workshops throughout the state during May. Following are the dates and locations of the workshops:

* May 2, 10 a.m. Missouri Department of Natural Resources Conference Center at 1738 E. Elm. St. in Jefferson City.

* May 3, 1 p.m. Powder Valley Nature Center, 11715 Cragwold Rd., Kirkwood.

* May 4, 10 a.m. Missouri Department of Conservation's Southeast Regional Office, 2302 County Park Dr., Cape Girardeau.

* May 8, 1 p.m. Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center, 1401 NW Park Road, Blue Springs.

* May 9, 10 a.m. Springfield Conservation Nature Center, 4600 S. Chrisman, Springfield.

For more information on the Recreational Trails Program or to request an application, contact the Department of Natural Resources, Division of State Parks, Grants Management Section, 1659 E. Elm St., Jefferson City, MO 65101 or call (573) 751-0848. The application is available for downloading at www.mostateparks.com/grantinfo.htm.

MoBikeFed board member Jeff Huff represents the bicycling community on the grant oversight board.