Thousands of landowners in five Eastern Kentucky counties are receiving notices in the mail from the “Stream Team.” The mailer comes from the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, which is offering to repair unstable or eroding streams at no cost.
“Unstable stream banks erode valuable soil and property,” said Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commissioner Jon Gassett. “Costly problems like bank erosion can – and should – be repaired. The Stream Team program is a valuable tool that can be used make these repairs at no cost to landowners.”
While any stream in Kentucky can be considered for the program, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife is making a special effort in Floyd, Johnson, Knott, Martin and Pike counties. The funds come exclusively from the Stream and Wetland Mitigation Fund. No general fund tax dollars or hunting/fishing license money will be used. The Mitigation Fund is a trust that was created solely to improve local streams throughout Kentucky.
“Small streams are a very important part of Kentucky waterways and its fisheries,” said Ron Brooks, director of the Fisheries Division. “We are excited to have a program that brings together working lands and clean water.”
There are criteria that have to be met. For example, the streams must be at least 1,000 feet long with banks that are eroding or unstable, and both sides of the stream must be available for repairs. In addition, project sites cannot be mined or have oil and gas activities along the stream.
Any landowner who did not receive a notice from Kentucky Fish and Wildlife may still be eligible. For more information, including additional requirements, visit the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife website at fw.ky.gov and look under the “Habitat Improvement” tab. Landowners also may contact B.J. Jamison with the “Stream Team,” at (502) 564-9802 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.