2023 IIP Program
Back Country Horsemen of Missouri (BCHMO) is proud to announce the 2023 Infrastructure Improvement Program (IIP).
BACKGROUND: Several years ago, Back Country Horsemen of Missouri (BCHMO) established the Trail Maintenance Incentive (TMI) program. The purpose of the program was to provide funding to assist land managers with the maintenance and improvements of public trails that they were unable to accomplish due to budget shortfalls. Since then, Congress has allocated billions of dollars to address the maintenance backlog, and land managers are better able to handle the maintenance of their infrastructure. The TMI program has been phased out and is being replaced with the new BCHMO IIP. The IIP is intended to assist chapters in making significant improvements to public trails and equestrian use facilities. Each year in January, the Board of Directors of BCHMO will budget funds for the program calendar year. In 2023 the amount allocated was $5,000.
PURPOSE: Assist Chapters in funding infrastructure improvement projects through a cooperative agreement with a public land manager to benefit an equestrian/multi-use trail, campground, or trailhead. Awards will be made to chapters, based on the value of the project to the public, with a focus on equestrian use. Some examples would include, but not be limited to the following: Installation of high lines, hitching rails, corrals, and enlarging parking for horse trailers. This program is not intended to fund maintenance items such as fuel and tools. The cost of rental equipment to complete an improvement project would be covered, however.
- Chapter project leader and the land manager will collectively identify and agree upon a project benefiting an equestrian/multi-use trail or trailhead. The Chapter may partner with the public land management agency or other organizations that support the project for additional funding. BCHMO’s funding will not exceed the annual IIP budget amount. Each Chapter, including At-Large, shall be limited to one (1) IIP Grant per calendar year.
- The Chapter and land manager leadership must agree the project is capable of being completed in a timely manner. Projects must be completed within twelve (12) months from the date of approval unless the Chapter can document that such delay was due to circumstances beyond its control, and such extension is granted by the IIP Committee. Project funding will not extend beyond twelve (12) months from the date of award unless an extension has been approved by the IIP Committee. In no event will the IIP Committee approve project funding exceeding 24 months, and any further extension would require approval of the BCHMO Board of Directors.
- Chapter project leader and land manager leadership must sign and date the IIP application.
- The IIP application must be submitted to the IIP Committee no later than thirty (30) days prior to the anticipated project start date. No work on a project in which reimbursement for expenses is sought shall begin before the grant award date.
- As project costs occur, the Chapter project leader will submit vendor invoices and receipts to the IIP Committee Chair. Upon approval, these will be submitted to the BCHMO Treasurer for payment.
- Volunteer service hours/in-kind donations will be weighted heavily by the IIP Committee in awarding IIP Grants. All such volunteer hours shall be logged and entered into the BCHMO Volunteer Service Hour online system.
- Upon completion of the project, documentation will be sent to the IIP Committee through a Completion Report which shall include an article describing the project with accompanying pictures and any acknowledgment letters from stakeholders. The article and supporting media will be forwarded to the Publications Chair for publication in the BCHMO Newsletter
- The IIP Committee will review and evaluate each application to ensure it falls within the BCHMO Mission and has been correctly completed.
- Upon evaluating and ranking the applications for what best serves the public and BCHMO, the IIP Committee will award grants in the order of ranking on a first-come, first-served basis up to the BCHMO budgeted amount for the calendar year.
- If a Chapter requests additional time for the completion of a project due to no fault of theirs, the IIP Committee will take the circumstance under advisement, consider exceptions based on merit, and may grant up to a 12-month extension. If a further extension is required, it shall be submitted to the BCHMO Board of Directors, who may grant a further extension for extenuating circumstances.
All chapters of BCHMO who do not currently have an open TMI or IIP project are eligible to apply.
Please note that there are significant changes from the old TMI program. It is, therefore, imperative that you familiarize yourself with the new program rules prior to submitting an application.
We sincerely hope this program will assist chapters in fulfilling the mission of BCHMO and BCHA in “Keeping trails Open for All”
Get the program guidelines here.