Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Huff Run News


Officials Visit Huff Run Watershed
by Amber Leasure-Earnhardt, Huff Run AmeriCORPS VISTA

MINERAL CITY, Ohio --The Huff Run Watershed Restoration Partnership (HRWRP) hosted an Elected Officials’ Tour on Friday October 10th. All elected officials (federal, state, and local) within the boundaries of the watershed were formally invited to the event.

In attendance were Tuscarawas County Commissioner, Chris Abbuhl, Mineral City Councilman, Tyler Isaacs, and Sandy Township Trustee, Bo Hysong. Five members of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) were also present, hailing from offices representing the Salem, New Philadelphia, Athens, and Columbus areas that have worked directly with Huff Run over the past twelve years. In addition, five members of the HRWRP attended the tour, including president Ed Taggart, vice-president Bo Hysong, and secretary Marissa Geib.

The weather was beautiful, and those in attendance had a great time learning about the work that has been done in Huff Run over the past twelve years. The tour began with a brief power point presentation about the Huff Run Watershed by AmeriCorps VISTA Amber Leasure-Earnhardt at Slutz Park in Mineral City. Afterwards, the attendees were given the opportunity to visit the new Belden restoration project with Jim Gue from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

“We were very excited to show off this new project to our elected officials and members,” said Huff Run coordinator Maureen Wise.

The funding for the Belden project comes from the 2005 EPA Targeted Watershed Grant, which was only awarded to 12 recipients nationwide. In addition to HRWRP, the grant included the Office of Surface Mining- Appalachian Clean Stream Initiative, and ODNR.

Working in conjunction with five additional restoration projects upstream, the Belden project will help return Huff Run to its original warm-water habitat, as well as increase its capacity to sustain aquatic life and provide clean water for future generations. Huff Run has a total of ten reclamation projects scheduled for completion by the end of this fall.

The Huff Run Watershed Restoration Partnership is a nonprofit citizens group committed to restoring the Huff Run Watershed by improving water quality and enhancing wildlife habitat, through community support and involvement. The Partnership hosts various events throughout the year.

If you would like to volunteer with the Partnership, or become a member, you can contact Amber Leasure-Earnhardt, at (330.859.1050) or email her (amber@ruralaction.org). You can also visit Huff Run’s website at (http://www.huffrun.org/).


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