$3 MILLION FOR GREAT BAY TO BE INCLUDED IN SENATE APPROPRIATIONS BILL
U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Judd Gregg (R-NH) announced that the Senate Appropriations Committee has approved $3 million in federal funding for the continued conservation efforts in the Great Bay and surrounding areas. Shaheen and Gregg worked together to secure the funding, which will help the Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership continue their work to bring the Great Bay estuary back to its original splendor. Fishermen, oyster harvesters, lobstermen, and others who work and recreate on the Bay all benefit from these efforts. The funding for the project is included Fiscal Year 2010 Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations bill, which now goes to the Senate floor for final passage.
"Great Bay is a natural treasure that benefits the community, nature enthusiasts and the local fishing industry as well, and we need to make sure it stays that way," said Shaheen. "Conservation efforts like the ongoing project at Great Bay show us that we can protect our natural places and preserve their use for commerce at the same time."
“Given the incredibly diverse ecosystems it supports and the important recreational and economic benefits it provides, the continued protection of Great Bay should be a priority for all of us,” said Gregg, who is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and Science. “I applaud the Partnership for their extraordinary commitment to protecting Great Bay.”
“As one of the largest inland estuaries along the Atlantic coast, Great Bay has long been considered by scientists, commercial fisherman, and naturalists as one of our nation's most important marine environments,” said Daryl Burtnett, state director for The Nature Conservancy in New Hampshire. “The Partnership couldn't be more proud of its successes, but the challenges that await us including restoring oyster populations to help enhance water quality and protecting additional acres of important wildlife habitat are milestones yet to be reached to bring back what's 'Great' about Great Bay.”
The funding will help protect an additional 175 acres of critical shoreline habitat in the Great Bay estuary. Over the last ten years, the Great Bay Protection Partnership has protected over 5,000 acres of land in the Great Bay estuary, becoming the largest conservation effort in the Seacoast. The funding was approved today by the Appropriations Committee as part of the Fiscal Year 2010 Commerce Appropriations legislation, which includes $7,550,00 for projects in New Hampshire