The Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. awarded $29,300 in grants this week to projects and programs intended to benefit the environment throughout Routt County.
Projects that will be funded by the grants include three new pedestrian recycling units for Yampa Valley Recycles and a research paper about water use being undertaken by the Institute of Public Policy at Colorado State University.
This month marks the second year the grants have been given, and this year's total more than doubles the funds awarded in 2004.
"During our inaugural year, this fund was able to award more than $14,000 in grants to several environmental organizations in the community," said Chris Diamond, president of Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. "Being able to double the grant amount in just our second year is amazing. These grants will go a long way in helping a number of organizations throughout the community achieve their environmental goals."
The monies are contained within the Ski Corp. Employee Environmental Fund managed by the Yampa Valley Community Foundation. An 11-member advisory committee made up of year-round resort employees awards grants in the range of $500 to $10,000.
The original money for the fund was generated by the sales of chairs taken off the original Burgess Creek chairlift when it was replaced last year. The largest single recipient in 2004 was Yampatika, which was awarded $5,000 to help it build a new nature display for visitors.
This year's largest single grant was made to Yampa Valley Land Trust, which received $10,000 to aid in the ongoing effort to conserve undeveloped land in the valley.
Yampa Valley Recycles will receive $7,400 to fund the three new recycling units.
Other grants include: $1,300 to the Routt County Cooperative Extension Office to update environmental displays at Thunderhead; $1,000 to the Community Agriculture Alliance for its land stewardship course; $2,000 to the CSU Institute of Public Policy for the white paper on water issues, to include Routt County; $600 to Yampa River Botanic Park for a new flowerbed; $2,500 to Rocky Mountain Youth Corps to establish native plant gardens and rehabilitate wetlands at Yampa River Park; $2,500 to Young Tracks Preschool and Childcare Center for an environmental education program; and $2,000 to the Steamboat Springs Community Youth Corps for environmental programs at Carpenter Ranch.
"The company has developed a strong position over the past four decades to protect the environment and provide responsible stewardship of the public and private lands on which the resort operates," said Lyn Halliday, Ski Corp.'s environmental affairs director.
The Yampa Valley Com--munity Foundation manages more than 100 donor funds from scholarships to legacy endowments and has awarded $2.5 million in grants and built an endowment, including future gifts, of almost $10 million.
Ski Corp. Employee Environ--mental Fund applications are accepted yearround and are reviewed periodically as the committee deems necessary. The tentative deadline for the 2006 granting cycle is 5 p.m. June 30, 2006. Applications may be picked up at the resort switchboard, fourth floor of the gondola building, or the Yampa Valley Community Foundation office.