Washington state funding for most conservation programs comes in odd years, with even year supplemental budgets usually reserved to tweak around the edges. However, this even year, 2022, in response to a push by tribal governments, groups like TNC, and leaders in Olympia, proposed budgets include some of the largest supplemental funding proposals for salmon recovery on record. These programs provide incentives and empower landowners, salmon recovery leaders, and farmers to restore their riparian zones—areas along rivers and streams that are crucial for the health of waterways and salmon.
We anticipate up to $200M in salmon habitat protection and restoration funding for proven programs. Also included is funding for evaluating these important programs.
We know we need everyone at the table to figure out the best path forward for riparian restoration, so these investments would also include gathering stakeholders to assess current voluntary restoration programs, identify riparian conditions and address any gaps to voluntary implementation and make recommendations for improvements. Salmon need these vital programs, and we’re hopeful that the Legislature will prioritize their funding this week.