The Lodgepole Complex Fire is nearly 100 percent contained, and now work is shifting to rehabilitate the impacted land.
The Department of Natural Resources and Conservation’s Mark Bostrum distributes money to impacted wildfire areas as the administrator of conservation and resource development.
He’s putting the finishing touches on the first recovery contract of this fire season. It’s sending $70,000 to the Garfield Conservation District in one of the counties dramatically affected by that eastern Montana fire.
Bostrum says that “The contract will go to recovery efforts such as reseeding, and weed management, and replacing fencing and things like that affected by the Lodgepole Fire.”
Bostrum says it’s only August and they’re already seeing more large scale fires like the Lodgepole Fire, and the financial need to help landowners will continue to grow. “It’s important that the state is there as a partner. This money we get out on a local level from the state often be used to match federal funding that’s really starting to flow in.”
Bostrum says DNRC prefers writing contracts with government agencies so there is local distribution of the money. Those contracts can be with conservation or irrigation districts or even counties or cities impacted by wildfires.