With funding from the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA) National Parks and Public Land Legacy Restoration Fund (LRF), MATs perform deferred maintenance and repair (DM&R) work at national parks and national wildlife refuges across the United States. As part of this DM&R work, MATs also provide training and networking opportunities to public lands employees and partnership organizations. MATs consist of in-house wage-grade professionals across a variety of trades, including heavy equipment operation, electrical, plumbing, carpentry, masonry, and historic preservation.MAT teams are based at field stations throughout the country and mobilized regionally and nationally to improve their skills while performing critical DM&R activities. Examples of MAT activities include earthwork, water management, trail repair, historic preservation, and constructed real property related rehabilitation activities.
In the first three years of GAOA funding, NPS is authorized to use $34.1 million for MAT activities and FWS is authorized to use $13.7 million.
DOI sees several benefits of MATs, including:MATs provide training and hands-on educational opportunities in a variety of trades, build skillsets and professional networks, and improve morale that lasts throughout careers.
Teams are easily mobilized.
MATs provide an opportunity to put GAOA LRF dollars to work at parks and refuges.
MAT activities can be executed more rapidly, train our workforce, and reduce the cost of rehabilitation compared to contracted work.
MATs provide opportunities to strengthen relationships and enhance partnerships with targeted partner organizations, resulting in more diverse candidate pools for employment and internship opportunities.
MAT activities enable wage-grade professionals at public lands to leverage a network of MAT tradespeople when encountering specific maintenance challenges.
Upon completion of MAT activities, maintenance professionals will be better able to properly maintain assets and critical systems, which will help to extend their lifecycle and alleviate the need for unscheduled emergency repairs or comprehensive rehabilitation after years of declining condition.
Click the image below to access an interactive pinpoint map of the locations where FWS and NPS MATs completed DM&R activities with GAOA funding. Hover over each pinpoint to view the park, station, or refuge name and the bureau. Filter MAT activities by Bureau, or State or Territory. Completed MAT activities are updated as of February 2023: Click here to download the data in Excel format.
* Pinpoints represent approximate central locations for all activity associated with the projects.
Maintenance Action Teams work in national parks and wildlife refuges across the country to provide skilled and specialized repairs to historically and culturally significant sites. The National Park Service’s Historic Preservation Training Center’s Maintenance Action Teams are especially experienced in historic preservation and dedicated to preserving cultural resources in a sustainable manner.
In the winter of 2023, a GAOA-funded Maintenance Action Team worked through extremes in Missouri weather to preserve the Farm Home at Harry S Truman National Historic Site.
Working on this project, they experienced a transition from snow to balmy temperatures over the course of a few hours. For almost a century, the Farm Home has survived weather extremes on the plains and the Team preserved the Farm Home to withstand these weather events.
Follow along to see a Maintenance Action Team at work—from start to finish.
The Maintenance Action Team consisted of three carpenters and a Facility Manager on-site. During the first week, they:
The Team procured supplies locally, supporting the local economy. When possible, the Team tries to save historic or significant fabric and material for reuse or for preservation. Sometimes this isn’t possible, and such material is replaced in-kind, based on deep research and specialized knowledge.
During Week Two, the Maintenance Action Team covered a lot of ground. They:
Not to mention…
During weeks three and four, the Maintenance Action Team conducted the following activities:
The Maintenance Action Team completed the most extensive work on the Farm Home in well over 30 years to preserve the structure and cultural and historical significance of the home. The Truman Farm Home is open to the public, and thanks to the Maintenance Action Team’s skilled and efficient work, visitors will enjoy this historic home for years to come.