Federal stimulus dollars are helping spruce up state parks and beaches.
For the first time since the great depression Connecticut has a Conservation Corps. It’s a pilot program made up of about 30 teens and young adults. They get paid for the summer to work at the parks and beaches.
Connecticut’s Conservation Corps or CCC employs 17 to 24-year-olds who work at state beaches and parks like Hammonassett State Park in Madison. They work Tuesday to Thursday every week during the summer and make sure the place is spruced up.
“These are people that see that need. We’re giving them a little bit of direction and they see the need and say we can do that,” said Governor Jodi Rell.
Corps members spend their days clearing trails, installing signs, building boardwalks and working the lifeguard stations. It’s work that park goers like Robert Green of Clinton says is rewarding for the park and the workers. “It’s something they can come back and see the work they’ve done. The signs they put up or the work they did and they might remember it for years to come,” he said.
Of the $11 million Connecticut is getting in Federal Stimulus Money, the CCC will get $40,000. Governor Rell will use the rest for summer youth employment programs. She says its a perfect investment in the states future generations. “Many of the economists are saying this is worst time since the great depression so it still good where we can put good money to work to help us in creating jobs,” Rell said.
The program started on July 21st and will run through August 27th.
Governor Rell says she hopes to expand the program next year.