Michigan Civilian Conservation Corps Package Signed Into Law
Over the holidays, Governor Snyder (through Lt. Gov. Brian Calley) signed into law the Michigan Civilian Conservation Corps (MCCC) bill package, which revitalizes the program to encourage college students to stay in Michigan while earning valuable natural resources experience providing on-the-ground conservation work.
The bills, SB 1261-1265, were sponsored by Senators Geoff Hansen, Phil Pavlov, Tom Casperson, Rebekah Warren and Mike Green. They broaden the scope of work performed by the MCCC to include conservation and recreation work, requires the DNR to reach out to colleges and universities, modernizes the work experience to include wildlife enhancement, trail restoration, surveying and site restoration, expands eligibility and allowable compensation, and allows the DNR to partner with non-government entities to administer the program.
The current MCCC program, started in the 1980’s, manages two work crews in partnership with AmeriCorps. However, funding it has been challenging. The new program should revitalize the program by expanding its scope, participation and flexibility to receive outside funding. MUCC supported the bill package and thanks its sponsors and Bob Wilson for their work on it.
In conjunction with the passage of 2011’s Volunteer Bill, which allows volunteers to perform conservation work on Michigan’s public lands, the MCCC package expands the capacity of Michigan citizens to get directly involved in improving fisheries and wildlife habitat and expanding outdoor recreation opportunities.
If you are interested in future volunteer opportunities for conservation projects on public lands where you hunt, fish or trap, email your contact information to Drew YoungeDyke, MUCC Grassroots Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.