ITD & BLM maintain essential partnership for fire prevention,
A few years back, ITD was approached by the Governor's Office with a request to participate in a multi-agency meeting. The objective of the gathering was to discuss habitat preservation in key sage grouse areas throughout the region. Soon ITD employees found themselves at the table with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as well as Idaho Fish and Game (IDFG). It was agreed that each party had the ability to assist with preservation efforts in various ways and soon after that initial meeting, progress started to occur.
District 4 Shoshone East Maintenance Foreman, Carl Horn, worked with the BLM to apply for a grant through their agency. The efforts proved fruitful when ITD was awarded $155,000 to purchase mowers, lease tractors, and proceed with mowing strips of vegetation within the ITD right-of-way for a period of five years. Such mowing efforts also help mitigate impacts of wildfire by providing fire breaks and reducing fire fuels, which in turn reduces the likelihood of roadside fire starts.
Each year, ITD collaborates with the BLM and IDFG to target specific areas for mowing. The key roadways are those where potential sage-grouse habitat lies beyond the shoulder.
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