The Mineral County Board of Commissioners recently discussed potential projects eligible for 50/50 matching grants from the Nevada State Parks Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) in a meeting.
Seabee Park, Lions Park, and State Beach were identified as public lands in the application. The board deliberated on securing the remaining 50% of funds necessary for improvements, according to a report by Mineral County Independent News.
Public Works Director Eric Hamrey indicated his department’s willingness to contribute to enhancements at Lions Park. Rob Mathias noted the Sportsmen’s Club’s involvement in maintaining State Beach facilities, such as latrines, shades, and fire pits. Hamrey also addressed the need to redirect water from SR-95 due to washed-out K-rails.
Grant Administrator Alyssa Burke and Commissioner Cassie Hall explained the Nevada Division of State Parks‘ scoring process for grant submissions, highlighting that all three areas fit the criteria.
If Mineral County were to apply and receive approval for all three grants, the total cost would amount to around $300,000. However, the possibility of pursuing only one or two projects if all three were awarded, remains unclear.
Commissioners Curtis Schlepp and Larry Grant advocated prioritizing State Beach and Lions Park for grant applications. Burke mentioned prior discussions involving refurbishing tennis courts, removing playground equipment, and adding more workout equipment at Lions Park.
During a follow-up conversation, Commissioner Grant argued that enhancing State Beach could boost tourism in Hawthorne. Commissioner Hall shared her priorities, focusing on State Beach first and then Seabee Park.
The Board ultimately voted to apply for a $200,000 grant for State Beach improvements and a separate grant, not exceeding $100,000, to install an obstacle course at Lions Park.
According to the Nevada Division of State Parks website, the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act of 1965 aims to preserve, develop, and ensure accessibility to quality outdoor recreation resources for all US citizens.
For the 2023 fiscal year, approximately one million dollars are available from the LWCF to Nevada’s cities, counties, towns, GIDs, and Native American tribal governments.