Invasive Species in Oakland County

Oakland County Collaborative Receives State Grant to Combat Invasive Species

The Oakland County Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (CISMA) has been awarded a $243,775 grant to combat invasive plant species from the Michigan departments of Natural Resources, Environmental Quality and Agriculture and Rural Development. Oakland CISMA participants will match about 50 percent of the state funding, making more than $440,000 available for 2016.  

The CISMA was formed in 2015. The Road Commission for Oakland County (RCOC) provided the collaborative with $75,000 in 2015 to treat 22.5 miles of county road right of way (ROW) to combat phragmites, knotweed and swallow-warts which are the top three state-priority invasive plant species.

Phragmite, an invasive species, will be targeted in Oakland County

Phragmite, an invasive species, will be targeted in Oakland County

These plant species choke out native vegetation and absorb nutrients. Along roadways, they cause site obstructions for motorists and prevent roadside ditches from functioning properly.

Last year, 21 organizations participated in the CISMA, including communities, non-profits and county agencies. The CISMA used local matching funds to leverage RCOC dollar to expand the program further. Six additional Oakland County communities recently joined the CISMA enabling them to participate in the effort to combat invasive species.

The new funding will enable the CISMA to treat invasive plants along approximately 48 miles of roadway. The CISMA will continue to grow the program and open it to private landowners through public education and outreach.

Even though the state and local dollars cannot be used to eradicate invasive species on private land, land owners can take advantage by paying into a contract with a state licensed pesticide applicator that is treating other areas, thus lowering their cost. The CISMA will collect data and information throughout the entire process that will be beneficial statewide.

“I am pleased that RCOC was able to provide start-up money for this program,” RCOC Managing Director Dennis Kolar said. “The formation of a solid CISMA combined with last year’s effort to combat invasive species really helped the group put together a solid application for state funding that RCOC was very happy to support,” Kolar added.

The state provided $3.6 million to 19 grant projects. Grants ranged from $35,000 to $350,000. Organizations participating in the Oakland CISMA include:

  • Townships: Addison, Bloomfield, Brandon, Highland, Independence, Orion, Oakland, Rose, Waterford and West Bloomfield
  • Cities: Clarkston, Keego Harbor and Novi
  • Oakland County Parks and Recreation Commission
  • Oakland Intermediate School District
  • Oakland Conservation District
  • Oakland County Facilities Operations
  • The Road Commission for Oakland County
  • Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner’s Office
  • North Oakland Headwaters Land Conservancy, Michigan Nature Association Land Conservancy, The Stewardship Network and Clinton River Watershed Council


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