The U.S. Environment Protection Agency is soliciting applications for its 2023 Wetland Program Development Grants (WPDGs) to assist state, tribal, territory (Insular Areas), local government agencies, and interstate or intertribal entities in developing or refining state, tribal, territory, or local programs which protect, manage, and restore wetlands.
Donor Name: U.S. Environment Protection Agency
County: All Counties
Type of Grant: Grant
Size of the Grant: $25,000 to $500,000
Grant Duration: 4 years
The goals of EPA’s wetland program include increasing the quantity and quality of wetlands in the U.S. by conserving and restoring wetland acreage and improving wetland condition. In pursuing these goals, EPA seeks to develop the capacity of all levels of government to develop and/or refine effective, comprehensive programs for wetland protection and management. In addition to developing and/or refining wetland protection and management programs, EPA seeks to build wetlands programs to incorporate climate change and environmental justice considerations as described Justice40 (J40) of this announcement on the program’s National Priorities.
Wetlands are areas that are inundated or saturated by surface or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions. For this grant program, the term wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas.
WPDGs provide states, tribes, territories, local governments, interstate agencies, and intertribal consortia (hereafter referred to as applicants or recipients) an opportunity to develop and/or refine comprehensive state, tribal, territory or local government wetland programs. These programs are meant to:
- Develop the capacity of state, tribal, territory, or local governments to increase the quantity and quality of wetlands in the U.S. by conserving and restoring wetland acreage and improving wetland condition.
- Use one or more of the following “Core Elements” to achieve this goal.
These four core elements are:
- Monitoring and assessment.
- Voluntary restoration and protection.
- Regulatory approaches including Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 401 certification.
- Wetland-specific water quality standards.
Under this announcement, EPA will have two separate applicant tracks for eligible applicants:
- States, territories, and tribes can apply under Track One: WPP or Track Two: Non-WPP.
- Local governments, interstate agencies, intertribal consortia, and eligible colleges and universities that are agencies of a state government can apply under Track Two: Non-WPP only.
EPA anticipates approximately $2,268,000 in federal funding to be available for assistance agreements under this announcement to fund approximately 10 to 20 awards depending on funding availability and other applicable considerations. Awards for the selected projects will likely range from $25,000 to $500,000 in federal funding.
The project period for assistance agreements under this announcement should be no more than four years.
In accordance with Assistance, states, territories (Insular Areas), tribes, local government agencies, colleges and universities that are agencies of a state, interstate agencies, and intertribal consortia are eligible to apply for WPDGs under this announcement. Tribes must be federally-recognized, although “Treatment as a State” status is not required. As explained in Section I, there will be two separate applicant tracks with states, territories, 13 and tribes in Track One: WPP or Track Two: Non-WPP, and local governments, interstate agencies, intertribal consortia, and colleges and universities that are agencies of a state government in Track Two: Non-WPP.
- Intertribal consortia must meet the requirements of 40 CFR § 35.504 (a) and (c). These sections states that an intertribal consortium is eligible to receive grants only if the consortium demonstrates that all members of the consortium meet the eligibility requirements for the grant and authorize the consortium to apply for and receive assistance. An intertribal consortium must submit to EPA adequate documentation of: (1) the existence of the partnership between Indian tribal governments, and (2) authorization of the consortium by all its members to apply for and receive the grant(s) for which the consortium has applied.
- Interstate agencies are defined in CWA Section 502(2) as “an agency of two or more states established by or pursuant to an agreement or compact approved by the Congress, or any other agency of two or more states, having substantial powers or duties pertaining to the control of pollution as determined and approved by the Administrator.” (Administrator refers to the head of EPA.)
- Colleges and universities must include documentation demonstrating that they are chartered as a part of a state government in their application. Documentation may include such things as: state constitution, college/university charter, legal opinion from the state or territorial Attorney General’s Office, or case law that has confirmed the university as a state agency. Colleges and universities that are not chartered as a part of a state government are not eligible to apply for assistance under this RFA. Please note: if the applicant has applied to previous competitive announcements, they will still need to submit eligibility documentation with their application.
- Non-profit and for-profit organizations are not eligible to compete under this RFA.
For more information, visit Grants.gov.