Jefferson commissioners approve grants for Olympic Discovery Trail

Funding for trail segments totals well over $1 million.

PORT TOWNSEND — Jefferson County commissioners approved multiple grants on Monday that will go toward construction and beautification of segments of the Olympic Discovery Trail.

Combined, the grants total well over $1 million and will be used primarily along the section of the trail stretching from Discovery Bay to Port Townsend.

The largest grant — totalling $1 million and handed out by the state Recreation and Conservation Office — was approved by the commissioners during their meeting Monday.

The first $100,000 from that grant will be used to find a route that will connect the Olympic Discovery Trail to the Larry Scott Trail in Port Townsend.

However, according to Eric Kuzman, the assistant public works director, the grant really isn’t a grant at all.

The $1 million is all from legislative appropriations, which were handed over to the Recreation and Conversation Office, who had to figure out the best way to administer that money to the county.

“They needed a way of administering those legislative appropriations,” said Kuzman. “So, it’s managed in the form of a grant, but it wasn’t awarded to us, we didn’t apply for it.”

However, commissioners also dealt with three other grants that the county did apply for.

Those three grants — all of which will be used to restore shoreline and the trail along Discovery Bay — were consolidated in an effort to streamline the process of using that money for its intended purpose.

The Olympic Discovery Trail began to take shape in the 1990s and is expected to eventually stretch across the Olympic Peninsula from Port Townsend to the Pacific Ocean.

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Jefferson County Editor/Reporter Cydney McFarland can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 5550, or at cmcfarland@peninsuladaily news.com.

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