State seeks veterans to spearhead Puget Sound cleanup
September 18, 2011
NEW — 8 a.m. Sept. 18, 2011
The state is seeking to enlist military veterans to spearhead the effort to protect and restore Puget Sound.
The state ecology and veterans affairs agencies seek to hire veterans for the Puget SoundCorps, a branch of the Washington Conservation Corps.
State legislators created the program earlier in the year to restore, protect and preserve the sound.
Puget SoundCorps, a special AmeriCorps crew, is meant to aid the Puget Sound Partnership, a state agency, to return the sound to a healthy condition by 2020.
Officials said the Puget SoundCorps crew is the first to be comprised completely of veterans. Tasks include removing bulkheads and shoreline structures, cleaning beaches, planting and maintaining trees, restoring marine and near-shore habitat, and repairing streamside habitat.
Members earn the state minimum wage — $8.67 per hour — and a $5,550 AmeriCorps Education Award to repay student loans or toward future tuition expenses. Participants also attend a series of paid trainings throughout the year, such as advanced wilderness first aid, wild land firefighting, and flood and hazardous material response.
Washington Conservation Corps members help restore and protect the environment, provide environmental education and volunteer opportunities, and assist citizens in Washington and across the nation during natural disasters.