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VanderWall: Projects in 35th District to benefit from trust fund bill

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Curt VanderWall on Thursday supported approval of Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund (NRTF) projects for 2020, including development and acquisition projects in the 35th District.

“It is important to support communities and their local projects,” said VanderWall, R-Ludington. “This funding will improve the quality of life for countless residents in the district.”

As finalized by the Senate, Senate Bill 145 would authorize the trust fund to use $28.7 million to support 18 acquisition projects and 60 recreational development projects throughout the state.

The bill provides over $5 million for phase 2 of the Ludington State Park acquisition project and $300,000 to further develop the Roscommon County Shooting Range.

The bill also includes:
• $225,100 for Lake Michigan beach development in the city of Frankfort;
• $90,400 for access site development in Lovells Township; and
• $28,000 for development in Hopkins Park in the village of Bear Lake.

The NRTF is supported by interest earned on funds generated from the development of state-owned mineral rights. The fund’s dollars are constitutionally restricted to recreation improvements and land acquisitions. It has provided over 40 years of funding for high-quality outdoor recreation opportunities across Michigan. The process is competitive, and applications are scored on criteria developed by the fund’s board.

The fund was established in 1976 under the Kammer Recreational Trust Fund Act and was later added to the Michigan Constitution under Article 9, Section 35.

SB 145 now goes to the governor for her signature.