|Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) is encouraging local governments and nonprofit groups which are interested in providing or improving public boating facilities to apply for funding through the agency’s Boating Facility Grant Program.
“The program is designed to help local governments and eligible nonprofit groups, including land trusts, conservancies and watershed associations, provide or improve public recreational boat access facilities in their communities,” said PFBC Executive Director John Arway. “Organizations that represent State Heritage Areas designated by the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources may also submit projects.”
“Private businesses and service clubs are not eligible for direct funding but are encouraged to partner with their local government and other qualified groups to apply for funding,” he said.
The deadline for applications is May 31. Eligible non-profits must be classified as 501c3 organizations by the Internal Revenue Service.
Applicants may seek grants for property acquisition, project design and engineering, development, expansion and major rehabilitation of recreational boat access facilities. Activities must benefit and directly support public recreational boating. Grant funds may not be used for routine maintenance or operation activities.
Eligible activities include the rehabilitation, expansion or construction of new boat ramps, courtesy docks, access roads, parking areas, restrooms, and signs and localized landscaping. Eligible projects must occur on public lands owned by the project sponsor, or where the sponsor has a long-term lease or agreement on the site.
“For the 2011 round of grants, the PFBC will accept applications from anywhere in the Commonwealth,” said Laurel Anders, PFBC Director of Boating and Access. “However, we will take a more focused and limited approach to selecting projects this year, focusing on ones that follow the priorities established in the Pennsylvania Fishing and Boating Access Strategy and in President Obama’s Executive Order 13508 relating to the protection and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay.”
“Specifically, we are looking for projects along water trails designated by the Chesapeake Bay Gateways and Watertrails Network and projects located in the top 10 watersheds identified in the Pennsylvania Fishing and Boating Access Strategy,” she said.
“The Boating Facility Grant Program is a competitive grant program,” Anders added. “The Commission’s ability to issue grant awards is predicated on the availability of both internal and external funding sources. Applications will be reviewed and ranked, and awarded subject to the availability of funding. Interested parties are strongly encouraged to become familiar with the grant program guidelines and contact the Commission prior to submitting an application.”
For more information about the Boating Facility Grant Program and an application, visit the Boating Facility Grant Program section of the PFBC web site. For more information on the Pennsylvania Fishing and Boating Access Strategy please visit the Commission website at: fishandboat.com/accessplan.htm.
The mission of the Fish and Boat Commission is to protect, conserve, and enhance the Commonwealth’s aquatic resources and provide fishing and boating opportunities. For more information about fishing and boating in Pennsylvania, please visit our website at www.fishandboat.com.