What is in this article?:
- Arizona to receive $98m in Farm Bill funding
- Funding increased
- California not on list for federal watershed improvement money
- Florence, Fredonia and Buckeye, Ariz. among list of numerous projects to be funded
- 26 states slated to receive of $262 million in federal funds
Arizona will receive nearly $100 million to address watershed issues ranging from flood control to water quality.
The 2014 Farm Bill greatly increased the annual investment in watershed rehabilitation, recognizing the critical role of these structures in flood management, water supply, and agricultural productivity.
From the 1940s through the 1970s, local communities using NRCS assistance constructed more than 11,800 dams in 47 states. These watershed management projects provide an estimated $2.2 billion in annual benefits in reduced flooding and erosion damages, and improved recreation, water supplies and wildlife habitat for an estimated 47 million Americans.
Weller said that funding will provide rehabilitation assistance for 150 dams in 26 states. Funds will be used for planning, design or construction. Also, 500 dam sites will be assessed for safety through NRCS’ Watershed Rehabilitation Program.
The projects were identified based on recent rehabilitation investments and the potential risks to life and property if a dam failure occurred. Overall, an estimated 250 thousand people will benefit as a result of improved flood protection made possible by these rehabilitated dams.
“These funds will go a long way towards improving the safety and continued benefits provided by these watershed structures,” Weller said. “We will work closely with the local project sponsors to ensure that these dams continue to protect and provide water for communities and agriculture.”
For more information, visit the Watershed Rehabilitation webpage or local USDA service center.