On December 8, Washington State's Salmon Recovery Funding Board awarded $14.6 million to salmon habitat protection and restoration projects around the state. The award included $910,279 for four projects in the Yakima Basin. Here is the statewide press release, and here is a list of funded and alternate projects in the Yakima Basin. This year's funded projects in the Yakima include two projects focused on restoring tributary instream flows in Kittitas County, habitat work in the South Fork of Manastash Creek, and a fish passage project in lower Cowiche Creek. All implement high priority actions for steelhead recovery identified in the Board's Yakima Steelhead Recovery Plan. The funding awarded is a mix of state bond funds and federal dollars from NOAA Fisheries' Pacific Coast Salmon Recovery Fund (PCSRF).
This funding award marks the end of a years worth of hard work by our project sponsors, technical and citizen review committees, local staff and state SRFB staff. We are proud to act as the designated Lead Entity for the SRFB in the Yakima Basin, and believe that the locally-based competitive review process that we run results in technically-sound and broadly supported projects that will make lasting contributions to salmon recovery in the Yakima Basin. Thanks to all whose hard work made the grant review a success, and best of luck to the project sponsors as they begin to implement their funded projects!