JOHN DAY - Grant County is putting in for $20,000 from the state's Wolf Depredation Compensation grant program.

The Grant County Court on Feb. 8 approved the request, which is handled as a block grant application to the state.

The application breaks down the funding request as follows: $8,000 for death or injury of livestock or working dogs; $5,000 for missing livestock or working dogs, $6,500 for management activities to deter wolf activity; and $500 for expenses that may be incurred in implementing the block grant program.

The Wolf Depredation Compensation and Financial Assistance Block Grant Program was established by the Legislature last June. It appropriated $100,000 from the state general fund for th e biennium, with $50,000 expected to be granted in 2012 and $50,000 in 2013.

Under the funding rules, at least 30 percent of each application is required to be for non-lethal deterrents aimed at keeping wolves away from livestock and preventing losses.

The deadline for counties to apply for the first round of funds is Feb. 15, and there won't be another application period for another year.

Under the state law, ranchers who suffer losses from wolves will apply to the county for compensation. They must provide evidence including findings by wildlife officials that wolf depredation is to blame for the loss.

In order to participate in the state compensation fund, counties must establish wolf depredation advisory committees to set rates and consider wolf compensation cases.

Grant County's committee, which held its first meeting Monday, Feb. 6, has five members appointed by the Court: livestock owners Alec Oliver and Pat Holliday, wolf conservation representatives James Driscoll and George Meredith, and County Commissioner Boyd Britton. The committee appointed two more members, Jason Hatfield and Rob Stewart.


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