Federal funds to support Ill. Ash Borer fight

June 22, 2008 4:05:59 PM PDT
The state's fight against the emerald ash-borer beetle is getting some help from the federal government. Sen. Dick Durbin announced the 'Emerald Ash Borer Revolving Loan Fund' Sunday near the spot where the troublesome bugs were found earlier in the week. Durbin said the fund provides $30 million in low-interest federal loans to help offset costs of fighting the invasive beetles which have killed millions of Midwestern ash trees by burrowing into them.

"Clearly, with the city of Chicago now being affected, its a new challenge and a new level of funding that will be needed," Durbin said.

"There's an inoculation process that's only good for healthy trees. That's why we're starting our campaign out there to actually inspect all the healthy trees," said Commissioner Mike Picardi of the Department of Streets and Sanitation.

More than 20 percent of all the trees in the city of Chicago are ash.


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