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1539 Eleventh Ave. Helena, MT 59601
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RDG Spotlight on Active Projects

In the 2020-2021 Biennium the Reclamation and Development Grants Program has funded:

13 project grants 

17 planning grants 

Please see the project and planning grant pages for information on how to apply.


Spotlight on Active Projects

Musselshell County: Bair-Collins Mine Reclamation and Musselshell River Restoration

*Last updated November 2020

The Bair-Collins Mine Reclamation and River Restoration Project will reclaim an abandoned coal mine; reduce impacts from flood events on the Musselshell River adjacent to Roundup, Montana; improve the fishery; and create recreational access to the river. The project is a collaborative effort by Musselshell County, the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Abandoned Mine Lands (AML) Program, and the Musselshell Watershed Coalition.  Historical coal mining, railroad development, and channel stabilization have contributed to degradation of this reach of the river.  Restoration of the river floodplain will reduce impacts from flooding events, improve water quality, reestabilsh aquatic habitat, and improve terrestrial habitat.  This project received an RDG planning grant in 2018 and a RDG project grant in 2019.  

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This collaborative project is possible because of funding from both state and federal sources.  This multimillion-dollar project has received funding from DNRC Reclamation and Development Grants (RDG) Program, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) Future Fisheries and Community Ponds programs, DEQ’s Brownfields and AML Programs and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Without these programs, projects like this would be difficult to complete.  

The project began when Musselshell County received a grant from FEMA to appraise and purchase properties on the floodplain of the Musselshell River. The county also received a planning grant from the DNRC Reclamation and Development Grants Program to assess the impacts from the abandoned mine and design the project. Funding from DEQ’s Brownfields Program was used to assess and remove any hazardous materials from buildings in the project area. While the buildings were being removed, funding from the DNRC Reclamation and Development Grants Program ($500,000 project grant), DEQ’s Abandoned Mine Lands Program, and Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks was secured to restore the site. 

Project Videos

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Excavation of topsoil, waste coal, and scoria began in August.  The industrial nature of the site is evident in the excavations that have uncovered detroit riprap and other debris.  Metal and concrete recovered at the site are being hauled to Billings for recycling and reuse. Work continued through October 2020. The Abandoned Mine Lands Program is working with the Musselshell County officials to develop additional recreational opportunities at the site once the current construction activities are complete.  

Floodplain restoration is extremely beneficial to riparian and aquatic habitat and creates additional space for water during floods. Another RDG funded project along the Musselshell in Harlowton will remove petroleum contaminated soils, restore the floodplain, and reduce flooding in that area. 

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Available Grants

Currently accepting applications for:

RDG Planning Grants due Thursday, September 29, 2022 by 5 pm.

Apply now!


Webinars, FAQs, and more

See Resources and Training page for more information.

Need some tips on putting together an application or what to do once you have a grant?  See our Resources and Training page.


Looking for a current RDGP application?  Click on the available grants to the left.  


Final Reports available here:

RDGP Project Grants

AIS Grants



, 406-444-6839