The Wildlife Restoration Program, which is also known as the Pittman-Roberson Act of 1937, awards grants that fund projects that restore, select, improve and rehabilitate areas of water and land to be utilized for resting, breeding and feeding areas for wildlife species. The funding for these grants comes from an 11% tax on firearms, ammunition, bows, quivers, broadhead arrows and points, 10% tax on handguns, revolvers and pistols and $.43 on arrow shafts plus interest earned on the Wildlife Restoration Fund. This type of funding makes this program one that is used and funded by the same people.
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is responsible for the administration of the Wildlife Restoration Program grants that are awarded to agencies throughout the nation, such as the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. In 2009, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources was awarded four Wildlife Restoration Program grants. These grants are the Statewide Federal Aid Coordination Grant, the Statewide Wildlife Habitat Management Grant, the Statewide Wildlife Operations and Maintenance 75% Fed Grant and the Enhancing Minnesota’s Hunter Education and Shooting Range Program Grant.
The Statewide Federal Aid Coordination Grant is $84,562.50 and extends from October 1, 2008 through September 30, 2009. This grant provides funding for maintaining Minnesota’s eligibility for participation in the Federal Aid programs under the Wildlife Restoration Program, by completing projects effectively and efficiently.
The Statewide Wildlife Habitat Management Grant is $11,040,000 and extends from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2009. This grant provides funding for the completion of 25,000 hours on wildlife habitat resource assessments each year at Minnesota’s Wildlife Management Areas as well as on private lands that join these Minnesota Wildlife Management Areas if they affect the wildlife habitat on the Wildlife Management Area. This grant also provides funding for managing, conserving, restoring and enhancing wildlife habitats on public lands each year.
The Statewide Wildlife Operations and Maintenance 75% Fed Grant is $3,465,000 and extends from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2009. This grant provides funding for managing the boundaries of the Minnesota Wildlife Management Areas with the installation and maintenance of signs, gates and markers. This grant also provides funding for signage that states programs the Wildlife Management Area is participating in as well as funding for maintaining facilities on the Minnesota Wildlife Management Areas.
The Enhancing Minnesota’s Hunter Education and Shooting Range Programs Grant is $592,500 and extends from October 1, 2008 through September 30, 2009. This grant provides funding for Hunter Education Programs throughout Minnesota.
The Wildlife Restoration Program, which is responsible for funding many grants, enable a cycle to be complete, a cycle that begins and ends with the user of the facility that received the grant. This grant is used for many projects that are in place to improve public use, wildlife resource access and wildlife management programs funded by the Wildlife Restoration Program and the funds are calculated using an apportionment formula which includes taxes, land area and number of paid license hunters of each state that apply for these funds. These grants are disbursed to the states and insular areas on a reimbursement basis of up to 75% for the states and up to 100% for insular areas of America and with conserving the wildlife species and their habitats for many years to come.