PRAIRIE CITY, Iowa, August 11, 2006 - Ducks Unlimited volunteer Tammi Kircher, Keokuk, has been appointed to the Sustainable Natural Resources Funding Advisory Committee by Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack. The study committee began work this week in Prairie City and is required to issue a final report by January 2007.
Kircher joins 16 other Iowans on the advisory committee, which was mandated by the
state legislature and is chaired by Director of Iowa Department of Natural Resources Jeff Vonk. The membership represents a broad spectrum including conservation agencies and organizations like Ducks Unlimited, legislative members, agriculture groups, the Iowa Secretary of Agriculture’s office, Iowa Renewable Fuels Association and the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation.
Kircher described her service on the statewide advisory committee as the opportunity of a lifetime to make a real difference in restoring and permanently protecting Iowa’s natural resources, particularly the state’s wetlands, which benefit waterfowl and other wildlife. “I’m thrilled to be a part of this committee and look forward to working with other concerned Iowans on plans so that future generations have the enjoyment of natural resources in our wonderful state,” she said.
Kircher and her husband, Ed, have been active volunteers with Ducks Unlimited for many years, including service on local, district and state committees and serving as a state delegate to the national DU convention.
“The advisory committee’s work provides an extraordinary opportunity to increase natural resource conservation work throughout the state by identifying a new funding initiative,” said Ryan Heiniger, DU’s director of conservation programs for Iowa. “DU works extensively with private and public partners across the country, and the state’s that consistently get the most on-the-ground conservation work done are those that have adequately funded programs that leverage cooperation between various agencies and organizations.
The 2006 legislation requires the committee to provide a report that includes, but is not limited to the following:
- Information on what surrounding states have done to provide sustainable funding for natural resource conservation.
- Outline of a conservation funding initiative agreed upon by the advisory committee
- Outline of the amount of revenue needed and what would be accomplished if the conservation funding initiative is implemented
- Analysis of Iowa’s citizens’ willingness to pay for identified conservation funding initiative
With more than a million supporters, Ducks Unlimited is the world’s largest and most effective wetland and waterfowl conservation organization. The United States alone has lost more than half of its original wetlands – nature’s most productive ecosystem – and continues to lose more than 80,000 wetland acres each year.
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