Arizona Game and Fish accepting applications for 2017 Heritage Fund grants

PHOENIX — The Arizona Game and Fish Department is accepting applications for more than $400,000 in Heritage Fund grants.

The deadline to submit an application is Tuesday, October 31, 2017 to be eligible for grant funding, which will be available through a competitive application process in the following categories: environmental education, outdoor education, schoolyard habitat, urban wildlife/habitat, public access; and Identification, Inventory, Acquisition, Protection and Management (IIAPM).

In addition to government agencies, the department welcomes non-profit organizations to apply for a Heritage Grant as eligible applicants. This eligibility applies to any non-profit group which meets the internal revenue service definition of a 501(c) organization.

The Heritage Fund was created after voters approved an initiative in 1990 and is funded through Arizona Lottery ticket sales. Heritage funding goes toward conservation efforts such as protecting endangered species, educating students and the general public about wildlife and the outdoors, and creating new opportunities for outdoor recreation.

The grant program was established by AZGFD in 1992 as part of the overall Heritage Fund program. The grants were initially developed as a way to promote outreach to enhance important partnerships and generate fresh approaches in support of the department’s mission.

Since the grant program’s inception, the department has awarded more than $16 million and supported more than 800 projects throughout the state.

Applicants for this year’s grants should refer to the documents on our Heritage Grant webpage for guidance on applying. The documents include the Heritage Grant application manual, the grant application form and the various “Heritage Grant Funding Window” documents, which describe eligibility information and provide specific eligibility criteria listed within each grant sub-category.

Potential grant recipients must have a project that is either located in Arizona or involves research in which the wildlife or its habitat is located in the state and meets the requirements in the funding windows.

Proposals and applications for these grants can be submitted either by e-mail to or mailed to Arizona Game and Fish Department, Attn: Wildlife Grant Administrator, 5000 W. Carefree Highway, Phoenix, AZ 85086. No faxed applications will be accepted.

Applicants can submit grant applications up until the application deadline of 5 p.m. (MST)Tuesday, October 31, 2017.

Technology making Arizona roads safer, boosting economy

PHOENIX – A popular smartphone messaging app is helping to make Arizona roads safer for motorists and truck drivers while reducing congestion at the international border and boosting Arizona’s economy.

As part of a first-of-its-kind safety certification program for truck drivers and trucking firms in Mexico, the Arizona Department of Transportation is using WhatsApp to help qualified drivers and mechanics know whether their trucks meet Arizona safety requirements before heading to the border.
It’s part of an effort that has members of ADOT’s Border Liaison Unit offering a two-day International Border Inspection Qualification safety course in Mexico. The first workshop was held recently in San Luis Río Colorado, and the next is scheduled for Aug. 22-23 in Hermosillo, the capital of Sonora.

“We’re taking this historic step because a border crossing process that is efficient for international commerce and improves roadway safety is absolutely essential for both Arizona and Sonora,” ADOT Director John Halikowski said. “This innovative program is part of an ongoing effort to make sure we are doing our jobs the best way possible in the interest of both economic growth and safety on Arizona roads.”

Drivers who complete the course and pass both a 65-question test and a practical exam of truck safety will receive a certificate allowing them to use WhatsApp to send photos of trucks to ADOT inspectors before they approach the border. Inspectors will either tell them the truck meets safety requirements or explain what needs to be corrected.

It’s an extension of an effort launched in 2016 to teach commercial truckers in Mexico what to expect in safety inspections once they enter Arizona. The Border Liaison Unit held safety inspection classes at three border ports of entry – San Luis, Nogales and Douglas – before taking its training program into Mexico.

These efforts stem from ADOT’s use of the Arizona Management System championed by Governor Doug Ducey. This approach to continuous improvement empowers employees at state agencies to come up with innovative ways to better serve customers.

Juan Ciscomani, the governor’s senior adviser for regional and international affairs, praised ADOT’s efforts.

“ADOT is conducting trainings focused on helping transportation companies better prepare for the safety inspection process once they enter Arizona,” Ciscomani said. “This work is helping speed up the flow of trade and improving the competitiveness of our region, which has been a priority for Governor Ducey.”