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Battlefield budget includes new roof, tree removal

March 01, 2002|BY SCOTT BUTKI

Antietam National Battlefield's $2.4 million budget for the current fiscal year includes money for a new roof for the Visitors Center and removal of large trees on the property, Superintendent John W. Howard said Thursday.

The battlefield's fiscal year runs from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30. The budget information for the current fiscal year was released this week.

The budget is $277,000 more than that for the last fiscal year, Howard said.

Replacement of the Visitors Center roof, which leaks, is expected to cost about $100,000, he said.

The trees to be removed, an Oriental variety known as the Tree of Heaven, use up so much water that native trees suffer, Howard said. By removing the Oriental trees, native trees will be able to grow more easily, he said.

The budget includes $1.5 million for cultural and natural preservation and management, he said. This includes all efforts to protect, preserve and restore resources, such as historic structures and landscapes, fields, streams and forest, he said.

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The $1.5 million also funds preservation maintenance on historic buildings, management of the National Cemetery, water quality monitoring and agricultural land management.

The money also pays for protection of rare and threatened species, including a type of bird, the loggerhead shrike, and some plants discovered in recent years, he said. Some of the plants are still being identified, he said.

The budget includes $770,000 for visitor services, education and interpretation for the 290,000 annual visitors, a 2 percent attendance increase from last year, he said.

The budget lists $162,000 for the general administration of the National Battlefield and Cemetery.

The budget includes about $135,000 in revenue, he said.

Anyone interested in obtaining a copy of the battlefield's Annual Performance and Work Plan may call 301-432-7648 or write Howard at Antietam National Battlefield, P.O. Box 158, Sharpsburg, MD 21782.

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