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County set to receive $70K Recreation Grant

By Tamas Mondovics

County and state government representatives spoke highly of a recent grant benefitting local outdoor recreational facilities.
The news came last week from officials with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), who were pleased to announce a $70,000 parks and recreation grant last week for Johnson County ADA-compliant facilities at the Doe Mountain Recreation Area.
In a media release, officials confirmed that the grant is part of $6,370,000 awarded to communities throughout the state from the Local Parks and Recreation Fund (LPRF) program and the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) program.
The state also awards $448,000 in grants from the Recreation Trails Program (RTP).
“Local leaders need resources to provide recreational activities for their communities, which is a way to help make it happen,” TDEC Deputy Commissioner Jim Bryson said. “We are pleased to announce these grants and look forward to the recreation projects that result from this assistance.”
The news comes just in time for such projects as the Doe Mountain Recreation Area, which includes ADA compliant restrooms connecting to the existing facility, ADA compliant parking, ADA access, and construction of an ADA compliant deck on the front of the main trailhead building.
The site is an 8,600-acre protected recreational mountain that includes trails for hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and ATVs.
“Doe Mountain Recreation Area is one of the most beautiful wilderness sites in Tennessee,” said Rep. Scotty Campbell, R-Mountain City. “This important grant will help increase accessibility for those who visit the site. I applaud the work that was done to secure this funding and look forward to completing these improvements.”
The LPRF program provides state funding to purchase land for parks, natural areas, greenways, and recreational facilities. LPRF funds also may be used for trail development and capital projects in parks, natural areas, and greenways.
The LWCF program provides grants to states to administer to state and local governments to acquire and develop public outdoor recreation areas and facilities. The grants require a 50-percent match.
The RTP is a federally funded, state-administered grant program that provides funds for land acquisition for trails, trail maintenance, trail construction, trail rehabilitation, and trailhead support facilities.
“I’m excited the Doe Mountain Recreation Area is getting this grant for ADA improvements,” said Sen. John Lundberg, R-Bristol. “It’s important our recreational amenities are accessible for all to safely and easily get out and enjoy the outdoors. I appreciate the work of our local officials in securing this grant.”
These grants are distributed in an 80-percent grant with a 20-percent match.