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Stimulus funds improve Stanislaus River Parks
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More than $1.4 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) funds have gone to park improvement projects at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District’s Stanislaus River Parks near Knights Ferry.

 Under contracts to California businesses Women’s Empowerment Partners Inc., Erick Ammon Inc., Empire Landscaping, and Atlas Tree Surgery, the Corps completed maintenance and repair work and reduced its environmental impact through improvements at the park headquarters office.

 With Stimulus funds, Stanislaus bought waterless urinals for the park office’s public restroom, and solar panels for its roof, helping the Corps meet its environmental sustainability goals. Each waterless urinal will save up to 40,000 gallons of water a year. The solar panels, together with solar panels at eight other Sacramento District parks, will provide for more than 40 percent of each park and dam offices’ electricity needs on average.

 Stanislaus also used stimulus funds to repair badly damaged roads, improve parking lots, and control invasive species such as Chinese tree of heaven and giant reed, a bamboo-like cane native to southern Asia.

 “With the stimulus funds we’ve received, we’ve been able to complete improvement and maintenance projects that might otherwise have taken us years to get through,” said Stanislaus River Parks’ park manager Duane Johnson.

 “These projects will make Stanislaus even better for hiking, picnicking, camping and rafting for many years to come.”

 The Corps is the nation’s largest federal provider of outdoor and water-based recreation, hosting more than 350 million visitors per year at more than 400 lakes and river projects. For more information on Corps recreation opportunities visit   www.CorpsLakes.us.