Funding Posts

Information about funding opportunities for environmental work in Buzzards Bay.

Buzzards Bay FY2019 mini-grant RFP posted

The Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program would like to announce the availability of $79,338 in grant funds.  The Buzzards Bay Watershed Municipal Mini-grant Program FY2019 Grant Announcement has been posted on the COMMBUYS website.  We are seeking proposals for projects that implement recommendations in the Buzzards Bay Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan and will be principally located within the Buzzards Bay Watershed.

Eligible projects include:

  1. Stormwater remediation designs for discharges affecting marine waters;
  2. Implementation and construction of existing stormwater designs for discharges affecting marine waters;
  3. Wetland/open space/habitat restoration, preservation, acquisition or protection;
  4. Update or digitizing of wetland boundaries or land elevations from wetland permits;
  5. Migratory fish passage and habitat restoration;
  6. Construction of a boat pump-out facility in a municipality or harbor when none exists;
  7. Creation of online reporting systems for tracking of operation, maintenance and monitoring of innovative and alternative septic systems;
  8. Projects that, through direct action, mitigate for or restore: coastal waters, coastal resources, freshwaters, or freshwater resources adversely affected by nutrient loading (nitrogen or phosphorus pollution);
  9. Other activities in support of the Buzzards Bay Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan.

This solicitation is open to municipalities within the Buzzards Bay Watershed, including: Fall River, Westport, Dartmouth, New Bedford, Acushnet, Fairhaven, Rochester, Mattapoisett, Marion, Wareham, Middleborough, Carver, Plymouth, Bourne, Falmouth, and Gosnold.  However, all projects must be located principally within the Buzzards Bay watershed.

Proposals are due Thursday, May 3 by 4:00 PM.  Applicants must provide a non-federal match that will equal or exceed 33 percent of requested funds.  The RFR’s Question and Answer period will close 4:00 PM, Tuesday, April 10, 2018.

Municipalities may submit any number of applications and they may receive more than one grant; however, no single grant award may exceed $35,000 and no recipient can receive more than $60,000.

The RFR and other details on the program may be found at the following website: and on the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program’s website:

It’s not too late to develop a pre-proposal for a 2018 SNEP Watershed Grant!

To help restore clean water and healthy ecosystems to Southeast New England, Restore America’s Estuaries (RAE), with financial support from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), has launched the 2018 Southeast New England Program (SNEP) Watershed Grants. The grants target water pollution, habitat degradation, and other high-priority environmental issues, in order to foster sustainable coastal and watershed communities in Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts. Pre-proposals are due Friday, March 30, 2018 at 5 p.m. Pre-proposals are not to exceed seven pages (one page for cover information, not to exceed two pages for the project narrative, three pages for the budget, and one page for an optional  map). Partner commitment letters are not required for the pre-proposals.

The Buzzards Bay NEP can provide technical support in the development of SNEP grant applications, and we can also partner with organizations on grant applications that meet our program’s goals or tasks in our work plan. Call Joe Costa at 508.291.3625 x 11 if you would like to propose partnering with the Buzzards NEP to discuss, or Sarah Williams at 508.291.3625 x 13 if you need specific map products or other technical support.

The SNEP Watershed Grants’ streamlined pre-proposal process makes it easy to submit an application. With more than two weeks to go, there’s plenty of time to develop and submit your pre-proposal. Complete application and submittal instructions are included in the Request for Proposals (RFP). DOWNLOAD THE RFP & RESPONSE TO QUESTIONS HERE

The SNEP program has posted new “Response to Questions” that address questions asked at public information sessions and webinars held by RAE in late February and early March. Prospective applicants are encouraged to review this document in developing SNEP proposals.

The 2018 SNEP Watershed Grants will provide up to $2.5 million to encourage strategic investments by state, local, tribal, and regional partners. The source of the funding is federal, and grantees are expected to provide an additional 33% of the grant amount in non-federal matching funds. Cash and in-kind contributions may be counted toward match.

The 2018 SNEP Watershed Grants support the goals and priorities of EPA’s Southeast New England Program, a regional effort to promote a resilient ecosystem of clean water, healthy diverse habitats, and sustainable communities in Southeast New England’s coastal watersheds. The grant program also supports the goals and priorities of the Buzzards Bay Comprehensive Conservation and  Management Plan (CCMP). Learn more about EPA’s SNEP program here.

Funding Outcome: Myers-Weweantic River land conservation project

Wareham residents tour the Myers-Weweantic River land conservation project as part of the Father Bill's Affordable Housing project ribbon cutting event on June 19, 2016. 

Wareham residents tour the Myers-Weweantic River land conservation project as part of the Father Bill’s & MainSpring housing for the homeless and those in need ribbon cutting event on June 19, 2017. Photo by Joe Costa.

In 2016, the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program awarded $35,000 to the Town of Wareham as part of their efforts to acquire and protect 8.7 acres of open space, wetlands, and riverfront property along the Weweantic River. This project, which came to fruition in 2017, was novel in that it was part of a more elaborate effort that combined open space and wetland protection, public access and recreation, and affordable housing into one project involving multiple granting agencies and local partners. The Buzzards Bay NEP helped fund the wetland and open space protection elements of the project, resulting in the acquisition and protection of most of the ten-plus acre property by the Wareham Conservation Commission. An existing apartment building (4 housing units) was acquired and renovated by Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) with funding provided by the Wareham Community Preservation Commission and MassHousing. The building will provide housing for the homeless, and others in need. The Buzzards Bay Coalition, Wareham Land Trust, and FBMS coordinated on various elements of project. Kudos to John Browning of the Wareham Land Trust, Brendan Annett and Allen Decker of the Buzzards Bay Coalition, and John Yazwinski of FBMS, for working with the property owner, advocating the project at town meeting, and preparing grant applications. Besides funding, the Buzzards Bay NEP provided technical assistance in the form of maps used in the grant applications to other grant programs.

Congressman Bill Keating and State Representative Susan Williams Gifford were among those speaking at the event.  Read more about this story at the Wicked Local Wareham site .

Buzzards Bay NEP grant funding announcement

The Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program has two grant solicitations open: one for our FY18 Municipal Mini-grant Program ($128,274 available), and the other to provide support for inter-municipal and regional water quality monitoring programs ($45,000 available).

The deadline for applications to both grant programs is Tuesday, August 1, 2017 by 4:00 PM.

Information about the grant programs and eligibility is posted at


Free laboratory testing of stormwater discharges for bacteria

The Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program is offering free laboratory testing to assist Buzzards Bay watershed municipal public works departments, boards of health, and natural resource departments monitor stormwater discharges suspected of contributing to water quality degradation of beaches, shellfish beds, and other resources in the Buzzards Bay watershed.  To learn more, read this notice.

Crew removing manhole cover to collect stormwater samples for testing.

Crew removing a manhole cover to collect stormwater samples for testing.

2017 Municipal MiniGrants?

Generally each spring, the Buzzards Bay NEP announces a request for proposals to our municipal minigrant program. The amount of funds released this year will depend on federal funding, which remains uncertain at this time. The last request for proposals we issued was in May 2016, and grants were announced in August 2016, when the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program awarded more than $210,000 to fund seven projects to help towns in the Buzzards Bay watershed meet the goals and objectives of BBNEP’s Buzzards Bay Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan. These grants were awarded to Acushnet, Fairhaven, Marion, Mattapoisett, Rochester, and Wareham. Funded projects included efforts to remove an obstruction to a fish passage, permanently protect several tracks of land that serve as important habitat for rare and protected species, and help protect drinking water sources. The Buzzards Bay NEP is administered by CZM and provides funding and technical assistance to municipalities and environmental groups in their ongoing efforts to protect and restore water quality and living resources. For more information on the last grant round, see this EEA Press Release.