Twenty Indiana counties will receive funds for improving local bodies of water, thanks to $1,291,900 in grants awarded by DNR Director Dan Bortner through the DNR‘s Lake and River Enhancement (LARE) program.
The grants will fund projects benefiting seven lakes and 17 rivers and streams across Indiana. Most of the projects aim to improve water quality by addressing sediment and nutrient inputs into lakes and streams. Improved water quality helps maintain sustainable fish and wildlife populations as well as improve recreational opportunities in Indiana.
One new wetland construction and one wetland enhancement project will be completed with this round of grants, creating around 25 acres of wetlands. Wetlands have many beneficial functions including flood retention, water filtration, and providing critical habitat for a variety of birds, amphibians, and reptiles.
LARE grants are funded through the annual LARE fee paid by boat owners when they register their watercraft with the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. This user-funded program benefits boaters all over the state. The grants allow for the completion of projects that would be difficult for local organizations to fund on their own. Grants are awarded on a competitive basis, and local sponsors share a portion of the cost.
The list of projects by water body, county, project type, and grant award can be found at lare.dnr.IN.gov.