Illinois Department of Natural Resources

PROGRAM DESCRIPTIONS

The Office of Resource Conservation’s Division of Wildlife Resources administers four special grant programs that are funded by Illinois sportsmen through the purchase of Habitat Stamps and Migratory Waterfowl Stamps. These are the Illinois Habitat Fund, State Pheasant Fund, State Furbearer Fund and the Migratory Waterfowl Stamp Fund. Together, these programs are designed to protect, acquire, enhance or manage wildlife habitat and to support limited research and educational programs to further advance this mission.

The Office of Resource Conservation’s Division of Habitat Resources administers the Illinois Wildlife Preservation Fund Grant Program. The funding for this program is provided by Illinois’ taxpayers through contributions to the Illinois Wildlife Preservation Fund from their State income tax return. The program is designed to preserve, protect, perpetuate and enhance non-game wildlife and native plant resources of this state through preservation of a satisfactory environment and an ecological balance.

Illinois Habitat Fund

The Illinois Habitat Fund is one of three programs funded through the purchase of a State Habitat Stamp. The Habitat Endowment Act, enacted in 1992, provides long-term funding for the State Pheasant Fund, State Furbearer Fund and the Illinois Habitat Fund. The State Habitat Stamp replaced the existing Pheasant and Furbearer stamps, expanding opportunities for enhancement to all types of habitat. For the Illinois Habitat Fund Grant Program, eligible projects are limited to those seeking to preserve, protect, acquire or manage habitat (all wetlands, woodlands, grasslands, and agricultural lands, natural or altered) in Illinois that have the potential to support populations of wildlife in any or all phases of their life cycles. Eligible recipients are limited to any appropriate not-for-profit organization or government agency that has the expertise, equipment, adequate staff/workforce and permission from the landowner (if applicable) to develop and/or manage habitat.

State Pheasant Fund

The State Pheasant Fund Grant Program is dedicated to the conservation of wild pheasants. Eligible projects may include land acquisition, pheasant habitat improvement on public or private land, pheasant research, or education of the public regarding pheasants and pheasant hunting. Eligible recipients are limited to appropriate not-for-profit organizations.

State Furbearer Fund

The State Furbearer Fund Grant Program is dedicated to the conservation of fur-bearing mammals. Eligible projects are limited to those that educate hunters and trappers of fur-bearing mammals within the State and the general public concerning the role that hunting and trapping has upon fur-bearing mammal management; the laws associated with the harvesting of fur-bearing mammals; the techniques used in the hunting and trapping of fur-bearing mammals; the conservation, management, and ecology of fur-bearing mammals; and the promotion of products made from wild fur-bearing mammals. Eligible recipients are limited to appropriate not-for-profit organization, governmental entities, educational institutions, or corporations.

Migratory Waterfowl Stamp Fund

The Migratory Waterfowl Stamp Fund Grant Program is dedicated to the conservation of waterfowl that pass through Illinois during their migrations. Eligible projects are limited to development of waterfowl propagation areas within the Dominion of Canada or the United States that specifically provide waterfowl for the Mississippi Flyway, and projects to implement the North American Waterfowl Management Plan for the development of waterfowl areas within the Dominion of Canada or the United States that specifically provide waterfowl for the Mississippi Flyway. Eligible recipients are limited to appropriate not-for-profit organizations.

Illinois Wildlife Preservation Fund

The Illinois Wildlife Preservation Fund Grant Program is designed to preserve, protect, perpetuate and enhance non-game wildlife and native plant resources of Illinois through preservation of a satisfactory environment and an ecological balance. Projects proposed for grant funding must focus on management, site inventories or education and cannot exceed $2,000.00. Management projects are those activities related to stewardship of land and/or water which are of direct benefit to non-game wildlife, native plants and natural communities. Examples of this type of project include exotic species removal, brush cutting, nest structures, and vegetation management. Site inventory projects are those activities which inventory species, taxa (birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fishes, plants, invertebrates, etc.), vegetation, habitats, etc. on an area of land. Education projects are those activities that teach Illinoisans about the natural world around them and hopefully have lasting effects. Examples of this type of project include interpretive trails, trail signs, curricula, displays, workshops, development of ongoing outdoor education activities, instructional packets and materials. (“One time only” projects directed at one small group of students will generally not be funded.)

APPLICATION FORMS AND EVALUATION PROCESS

Large Projects IL Wildlife Preservation Fund April 1st
Rehabbers IL Wildlife Preservation Fund April 1st
Small Projects IL Wildlife Preservation Fund April 1st
Illinois Habitat Fund August 1st
State Pheasant Fund August 1st

To receive a grant from any of these Special Wildlife Funds an applicant must submit detailed information on his proposal. To aid in presenting this information the Department has provided application forms with general instructions for completion. There are different forms prepared for the different Special Wildlife Funds Grant Programs. These forms are designed to allow the Department and its advisory committees to obtain enough information to evaluate the proposed project.

The applicant must provide all information requested on the application. Incomplete applications will be returned. Only one (1) original application with supporting documentation needs to be submitted. Facsimile applications will not be accepted.

All on-time and complete applications are reviewed and prioritized by the fund’s advisory committee according to the following criteria (as applicable to the specific fund): completed application, past grant performance of the applicant, eligibility, feasibility, adverse impacts, quality of the proposed habitat, priority for the Department, the applicant’s cost-share match, and the applicant’s plan for general public access to and/or use of the proposed habitat development or equipment purchase.

The advisory committee will forward to the Director all applications and the prioritized list of all projects deemed to be consistent with the purposes of the targeted fund. The Director will determine which grants will be awarded after considering the recommendations of the advisory committee. All applicants will be notified of the Director’s decision.

GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS

Detailed information on the applicant and proposal is required to apply for a Special Wildlife Funds Grant. Application forms are available from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The information that is to be provided is generally the following (if using the Department’s application form, please follow the detailed instructions available for that form):

Applicant Information Necessary information includes the name, mailing address, daytime telephone number and e-mail address (if available) for the applicant that will be receiving the grant. Identify the applicant representative that is the person completing the application and authorized to sign for the applicant. If there is someone besides the applicant representative who will be available to answer questions, please list them as Other Contact Person.

Comprehensive Project Description and Justification

The applicant must identify a plan for implementation, provide a map of the project area (if applicable), indicate the classification that most describes the proposed project and provide a project title. It is essential that the project is described concisely but completely, providing comprehensive justification on why the project is needed.

Habitat improvement projects must identify the type of habitat, species involved, acreage affected, and indicate the party responsible for documenting maintenance and associated costs. The method to be used for the proposed improvement including the equipment and technique to be used should be outlined. If any of the proposed acreage is enrolled in a federal or state conservation program, and if the landowners are receiving incentive cash payments this must be disclosed. Applications for seed purchases must indicate the species of seed. For seed mixes indicate all seed species in mix.

Equipment purchases should describe the requested equipment and explain why this model was selected; identify the rental rate that will be charged on this piece of equipment (if any); list any other charges that may be passed on to anyone renting this piece of equipment; and explain public training on the use of the equipment. Equipment purchased through Special Wildlife Funds grant programs must remain available for loan to perform like services.

Management and site inventory projects must identify the location (county, section, township, range and city) where the proposed project will take place. The project objects, methods and materials should be clearly stated.

Education projects should describe the intended audience the project is supposed to reach, list the objectives to be attained through the project, and tell what, if any, products will be produced through implementation of the project. (Migratory Waterfowl Stamp Funds cannot be used for Education Projects.)

Research projects must list the name and additional information on the person acting as the Principal Investigator, indicate the name of the research proposal, and include a detailed research proposal. (Migratory Waterfowl Stamp Funds cannot be used for Research Projects.)

Funding/Budget Details (Please round all figures.)

List all projected expenditures associated with the Project, broken down into the categories of personnel, travel, equipment, materials/supplies, contractual services or other. List the unit cost, quantity and total. The applicant should identify which expenditures will come from grant funds and which will be provided by matching funds. For each category list the source and amount of any additional funds that will be contributed to the project. “In-kind” (non-cash) contributions are not allowed as part of the applicant’s matching funds.

Attachments

The applicant should provide any attachments that provide documentation to the proposal. Examples of pertinent attachments include any legally required permits and surveys, site maps (county plat maps, aerial photos, soil survey maps, USGS topographic maps, Project Site Maps); price quotes for equipment (indicating model features and any accessories); or a management plan (prepared by an Illinois Department of Natural Resources biologist, NRCS/FSA employee or other professionally recognized biologist) may also be attached if helpful. If the attachments are not readily photocopied (color photographs, color maps or drawings, etc.) ten copies of the attachment(s) must be provided.

APPLICATION DEADLINES

Project applications are to be received at the DNR Headquarters office (see address below) no later than 5:00 p.m. on the following dates:

Large Projects IL Wildlife Preservation Fund April 1st
Rehabbers IL Wildlife Preservation Fund April 1st
Small Projects IL Wildlife Preservation Fund April 1st
Illinois Habitat Fund August 1st
State Pheasant Fund August 1st

All pages of the application form are to be returned. Applications can not be recieved by facsimile.

Mailing Address:

Illinois Department of Natural Resources
Office of Resource Conservation
Federal Aid / Special Funds Section
One Natural Resources Way
Springfield, Illinois 62702-1271

Telephone number: 217-782-2602
E-mail:dnr.specialfunds@illinois.gov

QUESTIONS

Any questions regarding the Special Wildlife Funds Grant Program or completing the Special Wildlife Funds Grant Application Form should be directed to the Office of Resource Conservation - Special Funds at 217-782-2602, e-mail address:dnr.specialfunds@illinois.gov

Equal opportunity to participate in programs of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) and those funded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies is available to all individuals regardless of race, sex, national origin, disability, age, religion or other non-merit factors. If you believe you have been discriminated against, contact the funding source's civil rights office and/or the Equal Employment Opportunity Officer, IDNR, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271; 217-785-0067; TTY 217-782-9175.

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