Michigan Conservation efforts awarded $35 million in funding

Michigan Conservation efforts received a boost in support today after the U.S. Department of the Interior announced it’s intention to provide $35.2 million in funding for fish and wildlife conservation and recreation projects.

“This funding is a major part of our state’s budget for fish and wildlife restoration projects,” said Senator Carl Levin (MI-D). “I’m especially pleased that this year’s funding includes funds that were not available last year, in part because of sequestration. This is just one more example of the damage sequestration has done and the need to remove the threat of sequestration in future years.”

The money is part of $1.1 billion in revenue from excise taxes paid by hunters, anglers, boaters and others that is being distributed through federal programs that return that excise tax revenue to states to conserve habitat and wildlife and to enhance recreation opportunities.

The revenue comes from excise taxes on items such as sporting equipment and boating fuel. Michigan’s allotment is up by nearly $8 million because of higher excise tax revenue and because the 2013 amount was reduced by budget sequestration. A two-year budget agreement temporarily lifted sequestration, but without congressional action, sequestration will return in fiscal year 2016.