Projects aimed at conserving the natural state of and providing access to public lands on the Gulf Coast received a multi-million dollar boost today.
Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, on behalf of the Gulf Coast legislative delegation, presented Department of Marine Resources (DMR) Executive Director Jamie Miller with a check for $8,253,214.51, representing the Tidelands Trust Fund turnback for Fiscal Year 2017.
“Making sure our grandchildren’s grandchildren are able to enjoy the Mississippi Gulf Coast the way we all enjoy it is a priority for our Public Lands Division, and the Tidelands Trust Fund is such an important part of achieving that goal,” said Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, who serves as State Land Commissioner.
Since 2008, and including an anticipated $9 million turnback in Fiscal Year 2018, the Secretary of State’s Office will have turned back more than $91 million to the Mississippi Gulf Coast through the Tidelands Trust Fund program during Secretary Hosemann’s tenure. This is $37 million more than the previous decade (Fiscal Years 1997-2007), which is calculated at about $54.5 million.
Revenue for the Tidelands Trust Fund is generated by leases and assessments on lands owned by the State in trust for the people of Mississippi. Generated funds are disbursed to the Department of Marine Resources for programs and projects geared toward conservation, reclamation, and preservation of Mississippi’s tidelands, and the increase of public access areas on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
“The projects funded by this program include public access piers and boardwalks and habitat restoration, and they are invaluable to the Coast and citizens across the state,” Miller said. “Many of these projects provide valuable environmental research that helps the agency’s management and conservation decisions. We appreciate Secretary Hosemann’s efforts, and will continue to work closely with his Office in the future.”
For more information on the Tidelands Trust Fund, visit the Secretary of State’s website athttp://www.sos.ms.gov/Public-Lands/Pages/Public-Trust-Tidelands.aspx, or DMR’s website athttp://www.dmr.ms.gov/index.php/programs/tidelands.