August 26, 2010

CARDIN HIGHLIGHTS RECOVERY DOLLARS AT WORK IMPROVING OUR NATION'S PREMIER WILDLIFE RESEARCH FACILITY & CREATING JOBS

Patuxent Research Refuge & Patuxent Wildlife Research Center Receive $15.5 Million in Recovery Act Funding

LAUREL, MD -- U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD) today held a press conference to highlight the important renovations that are taking place at the Patuxent Research Refuge and Patuxent Wildlife Research Center thanks to $15.5 million in funding from the Recovery Act. The renovations and improvements will ensure that the world-class research facilities will be able to continue and expand its mission into wildlife protection, habitat preservation and natural resource management. Patuxent is the only National Wildlife Refuge in the country whose purpose is to support wildlife research.

 

 The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) are agencies within the U.S. Department of Interior (DOI) that have offices co-located at the Patuxent Research Refuge.    The two agencies together have received $15.5 million in Recovery Act funding to complete multi-year projects that will expand the Center's capacity, renovate and upgrade facilities, improve energy efficiency and correct health and safety deficiencies.   Currently, the renovations have provided more than 200 jobs for Marylanders, and, once completed, will mean an increase of 90 scientific, research and support jobs on the Refuge.

 

"Patuxent is both a National Wildlife Refuge and home of our nation's premier wildlife research facility," said Senator Cardin, chairman of the Water and Wildlife Subcommittee of the Environment and Public Works Committee.   "Maryland is fortunate to be home to this outstanding facility, and -- thanks to Recovery Act funds -- we can make the important investments that need to be made so that Patuxent can continue to be a world leader in wildlife research and habitat preservation."  


"These Recovery Act investments are already providing jobs for Maryland while supporting the important work of the Patuxent Research Refuge and Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, a facility that has been instrumental in our nation's wildlife research," said Congressman Steny Hoyer (MD-5). "Maryland and the 5th Congressional District are blessed with a number of precious natural resources, and I am proud to have helped secure this federal funding, which will create jobs and make sound investments in critical national and local wildlife protection, preservation, and environmental priorities."

 

"These projects are bringing employment opportunities to Marylanders while updating a Maryland treasure and centerpiece of our national refuge system," said Congressman John Sarbanes (MD-3).  "It is imperative that we sustain the Patuxent Refuge and Wildlife Research Center so that generations to come are able to enjoy the environmental benefits and education opportunities that it offers."

 

"The Recovery Act is bringing jobs to the community while ensuring that critical wildlife research projects continue. And now, the stage has been set to rebuild and recover America's great wildlife science and conservation institution," said Dr. Marcia McNutt, Director of the U.S. Geological Survey

 

"Nearly $16 million in ARRA funds is an investment in the Patuxent Wildlife Research Refuge," said Anne Castle, Assistant Secretary for Water and Science, Department of Interior. "This funding will provide for much needed improvements to the nation's first wildlife research refuge. With condemned buildings dating back to the 1930's, it has become nearly impossible to support the world-class science necessary to ensure the conservation of our nation's treasured wildlife. With these ARRA, the research facilities will become state-of-the-art allowing for remarkable wildlife research."

 

"The new construction, when fully funded, will result in a new LEED-certified energy-efficient building for employees.   The co-location of Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Geological Survey staff at Patuxent will foster closer collaboration on research and science issues to support migratory bird management, Chesapeake Bay restoration efforts, and fisheries conservation," said Wendi Weber , Acting Deputy Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

 

The future U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Division of Migratory Bird Management Administration Building will be a LEED-certified "green building.   Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) is an internationally recognized green building certification system.