Wednesday September 28, 2022

Yakima Herald-Republic

Five projects in Yakima County and several more throughout the Yakima Basin are set to benefit from nearly $76 million in grants to fund projects across the state, the Washington Recreation and Conservation Office announced Monday.

The Legislature doubled the funds for the Salmon Recovery Board and the Yakima Basin Fish and Wildlife Recovery Board said more than $4 million will go to Yakima Basin organizations in Yakima and Kittitas counties.

A $39 million Yakima County project to restore Yakima River flows between Selah and Union Gap received nearly $4.8 million in grant funds, including $3.6 million in Salmon Recovery Board funding through a targeted investments program aimed at helping endangered orca whales by improving habitat for their preferred food source, Chinook salmon.

Yakima Basin Fish and Wildlife Recovery Board program coordinator Michael Horner said that additional funding will allow some of the money to go toward other projects in the area. Those efforts should complement recent improvements in ocean conditions, which have helped bring encouraging numbers of salmon and steelhead to the Columbia River so far this year.

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