Governor JB Pritzker recently announced $29.7 million in grants for 85 local projects which will help communities acquire open space and develop and improve recreational facilities throughout Illinois.
“Investments in local park projects are good for families and recreation enthusiasts, helping them enjoy outdoor activities and making Illinois communities better places to live and work,” Pritzker said. “Parks projects also boost local economic development efforts and spur additional investment throughout the state.”
The grants announced on Jan. 17 are funded through the state’s Open Space Land Acquisition and Development (OSLAD) program, administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). The OSLAD program can provide up to one-half of a project’s funds. When combined with the investment of local matching funds, the grants will support more than $56 million in local park development projects and land acquisitions statewide.
The OSLAD program has invested $403.2 million in 1,729 local park projects since its inception in 1987. The program receives dedicated funding from a percentage of the state’s Real Estate Transfer Tax.
Locally named as an OSLAD grant recipient was the Waterloo Park District for the Waterloo All Access Splash Pad in the amount of $400,000.