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Iowans are coming together this fall to talk about what they want for outdoor amenities in their state.
The biennial Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP) assemblies give all Iowans an opportunity to discuss their vision of Iowa’s outdoor recreation, soil and water enhancement, historical resources, land management and more.
“We are here to listen to Iowans tell us what they want for their parks, trails, museums and other amenities,” said Tammie Krausman, who coordinates the REAP program for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
Upcoming REAP meetings include Cedar Falls Tuesday night at Hartman Reserve Nature Center for residents of Black Hawk, Bremer, Buchanan, Butler, Chickasaw and Grundy counties, Oct. 28 in Decorah at Luther College Olin Building Room 102 for residents of Allamakee, Clayton, Fayette, Howard and Winneshiek counties, and Oct. 29 in Ventura at the community center for residents of Cerro Gordo, Floyd, Franklin, Hancock, Kossuth, Mitchell, Winnebago and Worth counties.
Meetings resume on Nov. 3 in Clarinda at Lied Center for residents of Fremont, Mills, Montgomery and Page counties, Nov. 4 in Neola at Breezy Lodge for residents of Pottawattamie, Harrison, Shelby and Cass counties, Nov. 5 in Bondurant at the public library for residents of Boone, Dallas, Jasper, Marion, Polk, Story and Warren counties.
Meetings began September 29 and run through November 5. A list of REAP assembly locations is available online at www.iowareap.com.
REAP assemblies are locally led meetings where issues can be brought forth and voted upon. Meetings begin with an open house at 6 p.m., followed by the assembly from 6:30 – 8. Each assembly represents a region of counties and participants are required to attend the region for the county in which they reside.
“This program belongs to Iowans and we want their input,” Krausman said. “REAP benefits every county every year either through improved water quality, by preserving our historical assets or providing outdoor recreation and it has had a significant impact on our quality of life.”
Each year, REAP provides funding for local projects through a grant process and each year, the requests for city and county grants exceed the amount available by two or three times. Since the program debuted in 1989, more than $300 million has been awarded to more than 14,500 projects.