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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Gov. Youngkin Announces Additional $500M Investment in Conservation

Gov. Glenn Youngkin

RICHMOND — Gov. Glenn Youngkin announced his administration has committed more than $500 million in Virginia’s budget for additional conservation funding.

According to the Office of the Governor, that funding will be dedicated to conservation and stewardship programs to address water quality, flooding, parks, dam safety, land preservation, and habitat restoration.

“As Virginians, we are blessed to be surrounded by an abundance of treasured natural resources. This investment delivers on my administration’s steadfast commitment to ensure our natural resources are preserved for future Virginians to enjoy. We are prioritizing funding to further advance Chesapeake Bay goals, support vulnerable communities at risk of flooding, and bolster state parks,” said Youngkin.

The Youngkin Administration said more than $250 million will be dedicated to address water quality improvements and represents “substantial progress” towards meeting Virginia’s Chesapeake Bay goals, as well as having positive impacts throughout the Commonwealth.

It added that while the investment directly targets conservation and protection of resources, the funding will foster job creation and sustainable economic growth.

According to the Office of the Governor, key initiatives include:

  • Over $200 million for Agricultural Best Management Practices (BMPs) implementation to work toward meeting the Commonwealth’s Chesapeake Bay water quality goals
  • $50 million for the City of Richmond to assist in upgrades to their combined sewer overflow control project
  • $73.85 million for the Norfolk Coastal Storm Risk Management Project that will assist the City in undertaking structural flood risk management measures
  • $100 million for the Community Flood Preparedness Fund that focuses on larger community-scale flooding projects
  • $25 million for Resilient Virginia Revolving Loan Fund that focuses on providing loans for non-federal match and property scale projects
  • $8.2 million in critical operations and staffing funds for conservation and state park operations
  • $6.1 million for key dam safety infrastructure improvements
  • $5 million for the Virginia Battlefield Preservation Fund
  • $3 million to fuel the expansion of the Virginia Oyster Replenishment Program, catalyzing job creation and protecting Virginia’s oyster population
  • $2 million to allow for the propagation and restoration of critically endangered freshwater mussels
  • $35 million for key projects associated with Bristol Landfill remediation

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