The Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund (MNRTF) has been in place since 1976. It provides financial assistance to local governments and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to purchase land or rights in land for public recreation or protection of land because of its environmental importance or its scenic beauty. It also assists in the appropriate development of land for public outdoor recreation.
The MNRTF is supported by annual revenues from the development of State-owned mineral resources, largely oil and gas. It is governed by Article 9, Section 35 of the State Constitution and Part 19 of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, 451 PA 1994, as amended. The program is administered by the MNRTF Board of Trustees and the Grants Management office of the DNR. The MNRTF Board of Trustees meets six times a year and all meetings are open to the public.
MNRTF projects provide for natural resource protection and outdoor recreation. By law, no more than 25 percent of the Trust Fund revenues available for appropriation each year can be used for development, therefore the majority of funding is allocated for acquisition projects. Applications are accepted annually as follows:
April 1 – Land acquisition and recreation development project application deadline. Development project applications must be submitted by April 1.
August 3 – Secondary application deadline for land acquisition projects only.
Grant awards are dependent on the appropriations process, but project agreements are normally distributed within 12 to 18 months after the application submission.
No minimum/maximum limits on land acquisition grants. (Source: MDNR Website)