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Playa wetland proposal submitted to NRCS Texas State Technical Committee
Southwest Region, September 15, 2005
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On September 15, 2005, PFW program State Coordinator, Don Wilhelm, made a presentation to the Natural Resource Conservation Service's State Technical Committee (STC) on a proposal for the development of a ?Playa Lakes Special Emphasis Area? within the Wetland Reserve Program (WRP) in Texas. Historically, most of the WRP projects have been located in east Texas due to the difficulty of establishing a ranking system which does not favor one geographic region over another; all previous ranking systems have had an inherent bias toward the larger bottomland hardwood restoration projects located mostly in east Texas. The proposal presented for the Playa Lakes Special Emphasis Area would eliminate competition with the east Texas projects by allocating $1 million WRP dollars to the Emphasis Area. Also, the proposal included a request to allow for an increase in the amount of adjacent upland ?buffer? acreage to be enrolled as a part of the WRP project. Under the proposal, NRCS would have the option to increase the wetland restored acres to upland buffer acres ratio from the normal 1:1 to 1:2. The proposal was well received by the STC, and it is believed that the NRCS State Conservationist will enact the proposal as proposed.

Contact Info: Martin Valdez, 505-248-6599, martin_valdez@fws.gov



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