Sunday, April 12, 2009

USGS allocates its $140 million in stimulus funding

No USGS stimulus funds will be coming to state agencies, based on spending plans revealed yesterday.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced on Friday how they will spend $140 million to fund 308 U.S. Geological Survey projects "to repair and build facilities; replace and upgrade scientific equipment; advance critical national mapping activities; and reduce the backlog of deferred maintenance," according to a story in Government Executive.

No monies appear slated to go outside the agency as many other federal agencies are doing with their stimulus funds. State geological surveys, AZGS included, had hoped that USGS would make some funds available for existing, Congressionally-approved federal-state cooperative programs, to help our struggling budgets.

Spending plans announced on Friday include:

  • $15.2 million to modernize equipment at volcano observatories
  • $14.6 million to upgrade 7,500 stream gauges
  • $14.6 million to remove cableways, groundwater wells and stream gauges no longer needed to make sites safer for the public and support local economies
  • $29.4 million to address deferred maintenance at laboratories and make them more energy efficient
  • $29.4 million to modernize the Advanced National Seismic System
  • $17.8 million to improve wildlife and environmental research centers in Maryland, Missouri and Wisconsin
  • $14.6 million to improve imagery mapping used for emergency operations, natural resource management and flood control
  • $488,000 to the USGS Bird Banding Laboratory to digitize and publicize bird banding data, which has applications in disease research

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