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County Executive's Office

Two Grant Programs Help Local Groups and Schools Take Action to Protect Area Waters- Apply Now

January 09, 2020
Christal Campbell, Susan Sandford
Land & Water Resources

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contacts:

Christal Campbell, Stormwater Education Coordinator, 608-224-3746

Susan Sandford, Strategic Engagement Coordinator, 608 224-3617

 

Two Grant Programs Help Local Groups and Schools Take Action to Protect Area Waters- Apply Now

 

MADISON, WI – January 9, 2020 - The Dane County Land & Water Resources Department and the Madison Area Municipal Stormwater Partnership are currently accepting grant applications for their Storm Drain Mural Program and Free Native Plants for Schools and Communities Program. Both grants aim to protect area waters, either by educating Dane County residents about stormwater pollution through art or by planting more native plants in local communities to establish root systems and reduce stormwater runoff.

 

“Engaging Dane County residents and youth in projects to protect our waterways is key to the long term health of our environment,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “We’re excited to provide these grants and assist local groups in their efforts to enhance Dane County’s outdoor spaces.”

 

Launched in 2016, the Free Native Plants for Schools and Community Projects Program helps provide schools and community groups with free native plants to improve water quality and offer educational opportunities. The deep root systems of native plants help decrease soil compaction and infiltrate water back into the ground, reducing stormwater runoff and protecting nearby water bodies. Native plants are also more drought tolerant and disease resistant, and provide important food and habitat to wildlife and pollinators.

 

Since the program began, more than 10,000 plants have been distributed to 66 schools and community groups.  An interactive map of projects that have received plants is available online. Schools and community groups located within Dane County are encouraged to apply. Applications are due by February 1.

 

Launched in 2018, the Storm Drain Mural Program uses storm drains as a canvas to educate Dane County residents about stormwater pollution through art. Water that enters a storm sewer often travels to local waterways without being cleaned—carrying trash, soil and other pollutants to our lakes, rivers and streams. The goal of these colorful murals is to capture the attention of those who pass by, help them understand where the stormwater that enters their storm drain flows, and get them thinking about what they can do to keep the drains and our area waters clean.

 

Led by Dane County, the Madison Area Municipal Stormwater Partnership, and Dane Arts Mural Arts, the Storm Drain Mural Program has painted 29 murals across 15 Dane County communities. An interactive map of murals is available online. A total of 10 storm drain murals could be added to Dane County’s landscape in 2020. Municipalities, organizations, schools, and community groups located in Dane County that are interested in having an area storm drain mural painted are encouraged to apply. Applicants have the option to assist with the mural design and painting or choose from a catalogue of pre-made designs.  Applications are due by February 15.

 

About Dane County Land & Water Resources Department

The Dane County Land & Water Resources Department works to protect and enhance Dane County’s natural, cultural, and historic resources. It provides the county’s residents with a broad array of accessible, high quality resource-based recreational services and facilities, and supports residents, communities, local governments and other agencies and organizations in their resource management and protection activities.

 

About the Madison Area Municipal Stormwater Partnership

The Madison Area Municipal Stormwater Partnership is coalition of Dane County municipalities and organizations working together to promote practices that reduce and improve stormwater runoff into Dane County lakes, rivers and streams.

 

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