Gov. Little signs IDAHO WORKS bill to support fight against invasive quagga mussels

Wednesday March 20, 2024

Boise, Idaho – Governor Brad Little signed into law today a key funding bill from his IDAHO WORKS plan to support the State of Idaho’s fight against invasive quagga mussels in Idaho waterways.

Senate Bill 1372 adds $6.6 million to increase the Idaho State Department of Agriculture’s (ISDA) ongoing prevention and monitoring of invasive species and future preparedness for rapid response.

“An unchecked spread of quagga mussels has the potential to cost Idaho hundreds of millions of dollars in direct and indirect costs. The IDAHO WORKS bill I signed today increases our manpower and resources to keep invasive species OUT of our precious water,” Governor Little said.

Quagga mussels are an extremely invasive species that spread rapidly and can harm irrigation, hydropower, fisheries, agriculture, the recreating public, Idaho’s critical infrastructure, and private property, and kill off native species of fish and other aquatic wildlife.

The invasive pests clog pipes that deliver water for drinking, energy, agriculture, and recreation.

Last year, when the team at ISDA confirmed the presence of juvenile quagga mussels in the Snake River near Twin Falls, Idaho put 15 years of preparation into action to successfully stop the spread of quagga mussels in its tracks.

The added resources from the IDAHO WORKS plan will help Idaho manage the potential crisis aggressively so we don’t lose control.

“I would like to thank our legislative partners on the bill as well as Agriculture Director Chanel Tewalt and all the stakeholders, legislators, and supporters for getting this important piece of funding to the finish line,” Governor Little said.