Missouri Highway Department will fund tree-planting
Saturday, April 28, 2007
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Missouri's highway department is spreading its branches of influence from road building into tree planting.
The Missouri Department of Transportation said Friday that it will pay for the Department of Conservation to distribute 2.5 million trees over five years to youth groups around the state.
The "Trees for Tomorrow" project will cost the Transportation Department $750,000, or $150,000 a year.
"Our job of building roads and bridges requires us to remove trees sometimes, and it's our goal to replace those trees with new ones each year," Transportation Department director Pete Rahn said.
The new trees won't necessarily be planted along the roadside, said Transportation Department spokesman Jeff Briggs.
Rather, they will be given to groups such as the Boy and Girl Scouts, Future Farmers of America and 4-H to plant where they wish. The money also will help fund the Conservation Department's annual program to provide a tree seedling to each fourth-grader and to provide trees for conservation areas.
The tree program will cost the department slightly less than what it otherwise would typically spend to resurface 1 mile of two-lane road, Briggs said.