The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation recently honored ITD’s District 1 as an Imperial Habitat Partner. The award recognizes the foundation’s partners in developing conservation easements to protect and preserve wildlife habitat throughout the Rocky Mountain region.
“This was a great opportunity for us to partner with local landowners to expand and enhance our environmental mitigation efforts,” said Mike Hartz, District 1 senior environmental planner. “The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation is to be commended for its conservation efforts.”
Approximately 370 acres in Boundary County have been conserved for wildlife habitat. ITD’s contribution was $20,000 and is part of a larger $186,000 mitigation effort stemming from the U.S. 95, Copeland NE project.
The property owners were interested in a conservation outcome for their property, but were unable to fully fund all the costs associated with the Conservation Easement, said Rance Block, of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.
“Without the funding from the Idaho Transportation Department, this project couldn’t have been completed.”
The easement does not grant unrestricted public access, however, the property owners allow hunting by permission, and the easement stipulates access for educational uses.
The district is confident that other partnering opportunities for wildlife mitigation will be found in the future.
Photos: A view of the 370-acre conservation easement in Boundary Country (top); Rance Block of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation presented Mike Hartz, District Senior Environmental Planner with the Imperial Habitat Partner plaque.