July 21, 2017

Grant money available for transient recreational boating facilities

The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries is accepting proposals for the Boating Infrastructure Grant, or BIG, Program for federal fiscal year 2018.

BIG is a grant program of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that reimburses up to 75 percent of costs for projects that construct, renovate or maintain tie-up facilities and related amenities for recreational transient vessels that are at least 26 feet long. The grant program was authorized by Congress in 1998 and is funded by excise taxes on fishing equipment and motorboat fuel.

The division serves as the liaison between projects in North Carolina and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for the BIG Program. Proposals must be submitted to the DMF to be considered for this funding opportunity.

Some examples of potentially eligible activities include transient boat slips, mooring buoys, day-docks, floating and fixed piers and breakwaters, dinghy docks, restrooms, showers, laundry facilities, retaining walls, bulkheads, dockside utilities (water, electric, telephone, internet), sewage pump-out stations, recycling and trash receptacles, navigational aids and marine fueling stations. Applicants must have or intend to construct dedicated dockage for transient vessels to receive funding for these eligible activities.

BIG funds are awarded each year. Grants are available on a two-tiered basis. For Tier 1 – state grants, all states may receive up to $200,000 per grant cycle for proposals that meet the program's guidelines. Tier 2 – national grants are reserved for large-scale, more expensive undertakings and are awarded on a nationwide competitive basis. For this funding opportunity, applicants may apply for up to $200,000 for a Tier 1 grant and up to $1.5 million for a Tier 2 grant.

For information about grant availability, project eligibility, and proposal development, please visit the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries’ website BIG Grant Program page or contact Vicky Pohoresky, division federal aid coordinator at 252-808-8016 or [email protected]. The deadline for applications to be received by the state Division of Marine Fisheries is 5 pm Monday. Electronic submission to [email protected] is required.

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