Governor Bill Haslam and Environment and Conservation Commissioner Bob Martineau on Thursday awarded $1,694,000 in Recreational Trails Program grants to recipients across Tennessee.
“These grants assist local governments and organizations in improving community amenities such as trails, greenways and recreational facilities, making the outdoors more accessible to Tennesseans,” Governor Haslam said. “The health and wellness of our residents is a top priority and these amenities provide another step to make our state healthier.”
The Recreational Trails Program is a federally-funded program established to distribute funding for diverse recreation trail projects. The funds are available to federal, state and local government agencies, as well as non-profit organizations that have obtained IRS 501 (c) (3) status and have a written trail management agreement with the agency that owns the property where the trail project is located.
Recreational Trails Program grants may be used for non-routine maintenance and restoration of existing trails, development and rehabilitation, trailside or trailhead facilities such as restrooms, kiosks and parking lots, construction of new trails and land acquisition for recreational trails or corridors.
“These awards will help fund some outstanding projects, including the development of new greenways and trails and more ADA-compliant facilities,” Commissioner Martineau said. “We are excited to be in a position to make a variety of recreational opportunities a reality for these communities.”
Funding for RTP grants is provided by the Federal Highway Administration through the federal Safe, Accountable, Flexible and Efficient Transportation Equity Act. The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation administers this grant program for the state. The maximum federal share for each project is 80 percent, with RTP grant recipients providing a 20 percent match.
Grant recipients were selected through a scoring process with careful consideration given to the projects that met the selection criteria and expressed the greatest local recreation need.
To learn more about the RTP grant program and other recreation or conservation-based grant programs available in the future, visit http://tn.gov/environment/recreation/grants.shtml. For more information about the RTP grant program, contact Gerald Parish at 615 532-0538 or Gerald.Parish@tn.gov.