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FWP Seeks Comment on Statewide Outdoor Recreation Plan

Friday, January 24, 2003

Headlines

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks is seeking public comment on the draft Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan for 2003-2007. The plan identifies outdoor recreational issues, and how outdoor recreation will be managed over the next five years.

 "The Land and Water Conservation Fund brought $1.28 million to Montana in 2002 to help acquire and develop outdoor recreation facilities," said Walt Timmerman, FWP recreation bureau chief. "For states to continue to participate in this federal grants program a comprehensive outdoor recreation plan is required."

The system that will be used to score and rank future statewide LWCF grant applications is also set out in the document, Timmerman said. Organizations interested in applying for future LWCF funding will use this scoring and ranking system as a guide in preparing grant applications.

A survey of existing outdoor recreation facilities in the document includes information from more than 400 recreation managers representing Montana cities, counties, state and federal agencies, school districts, colleges and universities.

FWP contracted with The Hingston Roach Group, Inc., strategic planning and research consultants from Grangeville, Idaho, to research and develop the draft plan. An advisory committee made up of representatives from federal and state agencies, the Recreation & Parks Association, the Montana Legislature, the University of Montana, and the Governor's Office of Indian Affairs participated in developing the document.

A public video teleconference is set for Feb. 10 at 6:30--8:30 p.m. The video teleconference will link 10 locations around the state to allow the public to comment on and learn more about the SCORP plan. Written comments should be addressed to: Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks, Parks Division, Attn: Kirsten Shelton, 1420 East Sixth Ave., P.O. Box 200701, Helena, MT 59620-0701; or by email: kshelton@state.mt.us. Comments will be accepted through Feb. 21.

For details on joining in the statewide teleconference, or to obtain a draft copy of the SCORP plan, go to the FWP web site at www.fwp.state.mt.us under Parks and click on SCORP under Hot Topics.