Outdoor Recreation Projects Funded

PIERRE — Gov. Kristi Noem has awarded a total of $764,430 in Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) grants to several communities. The federal assistance program provides up to 50 percent reimbursement for outdoor recreation projects.

The following communities were awarded LWCF grants for outdoor recreation projects:

• Aberdeen – Manor Park Pickleball Court Construction, $88,000

• Britton – Baseball Complex Improvements, $100,000

• Custer – Herbach Park Master Plan Improvements Phase I, $137,000

• Emery – Pool Improvements project, $29,430

• Ipswich – Recreation Complex project, $75,000

• Menno – Pool Improvements project, $20,000

• Mitchell – Dry Run Creek Skatepark Expansion, $53,000

• Plankinton – Poolside Park Improvement project, $73,000

• Wessington Springs – Pool renovation, $189,000

Land and Water Conservation Funds come from the National Park Service and are administered in South Dakota by the state Department of Game, Fish and Parks.

For more information on the LWCF program, contact grants coordinator Randy Kittle by calling 605.773.5490 or e-mail him at: randy.kittle@state.sd.us

Funding Available For S.D. Trails

PIERRE — South Dakota State Parks Director Scott Simpson announced today that applications are being accepted for grants from the Recreation Trails Program (RTP). The grants will be available for trail projects sponsored by municipalities, counties, state parks, federal land management agencies or tribal governments.

The Recreational Trails Program provides partial reimbursement for approved trail projects. Eligible projects include construction of new public trails, rehabilitation of existing public trails, development of trail-related facilities and educational programs that relate to recreational trails.

The application deadline is Friday, April 17, 2020.

RTP funds come to the state through the Federal Highway Administration and are apportioned to states by Congress to fund both motorized and non-motorized public recreation trail projects. The amount of funds available is based upon the number of recreational vehicles licensed in each state.

Application packets are available online at the Game, Fish and Parks website.

S.D. GF&P Commission To Consider Flathead Catfish Length Limit Restriction

PIERRE — The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission has proposed to establish a length limit on flathead catfish. A final determination whether to move forward with the proposed change will occur at their March meeting.

The new rule would allow for one flathead catfish over 28 inches per day on inland waters. The original proposal was made at the November commission meeting and included all waters in the state, including border waters, and originated from the public petition process. At their December meeting, the commission reduced the scope of the change to inland waters only, instead of statewide.

S.D. GF&P Commission Accepts Petition To Establish 500 Nonresident Special Buck Licenses East River

PIERRE — At their January meeting, the Game, Fish and Parks Commission accepted a petition submitted by a member of the public to establish 500 nonresident, special buck licenses East River.

Currently, there are 500 special buck licenses allocated to residents that must be used on private land and are good for “any deer.”

The additional 500 licenses would be good for “any whitetail,” valid only on private land, and come at a price of $554 for nonresidents. The petition further outlined that this allocation would be annual, that applicants must have permission from a landowner or lessee of private land before applying, and that the applicant must provide the name and phone number of the person with whom they have permission to hunt.

The petition was adopted as written by the commission as a proposal. Public comment is encouraged, and the commission will take final action on this proposal at the March 5-6 commission meeting in Pierre, South Dakota.

Neb. Game & Parks Will Certify Youth Fishing Instructors

LINCOLN, Neb. — The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will certify youth fishing instructors at workshops in Lincoln and Kearney in the coming months.

Instructors are part of the Youth Fishing Program, a statewide team of volunteers and Game and Parks staff who host educational fishing events. Workshop participants will receive training and tools to conduct youth fishing clinics. These volunteers will have access to Game and Parks’ loaner fishing equipment and educational materials for events. They also will receive program incentives.

Trainings will take place in Lincoln at the Nebraska Game and Parks Outdoor Education Center, 4703 N. 44th St., on Feb. 2, March 29 and April 26 from 2-6 p.m.

Contact Larry Pape at larry.pape@nebraska.gov to register, which is preferred but not required.

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