News Release: LCBP Offers up to $500,000 for Local Grant Projects
The Lake Champlain Basin Program (LCBP) recognizes the important role that local organizations, municipalities and educational institutions provide in implementing projects that improve the Lake’s health over time or strengthen our cultural heritage in the region. The Program is seeking proposals for projects that help implement Opportunities for Action, the long-term management plan for Lake Champlain. As much as $500,000 may be distributed through seven different grant programs.
The LCBP anticipates awarding more than 50 grants totaling more than $500,000 dollars with funds originating from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, and the National Park Service through agreements with the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission.
Senator Leahy, whose work in the U.S. Senate was instrumental in securing funding for the Program said, “I am so pleased that the Lake Champlain Basin Program this year provided more than 80 grants to watershed groups, cities, towns, schools and many other organizations working to protect environmental and cultural resources in Vermont and New York. The good work of all of these organizations is what inspires me to fight for Lake Champlain funding. I encourage everyone working to protect our ‘Great’ Lake to look at the next round of grants being announced today to see whether they may support your efforts.”
The Lake Champlain Basin Program’s 2017 Local Implementation Grant categories include:
Grant Applications due November 15, 2017:
- Education and Outreach Grants (up to $10,000 per award)
- Organizational Support Grants (up to $4,000 per award)
- Pollution Prevention & Habitat Conservation Grants (up to $25,000 per award),
- Aquatic Invasive Species Spread Prevention Grants (up to $15,000 per award),
- Community Resiliency (up to $20,000 per award),
Grant Applications due November 20, 2017
- Making of Nations (up to $5,000 per award),
- Local Heritage (up to $2,500-$5,000 per award).
Grant guidelines and applications for each category can be found on the Lake Champlain Basin Program’s website at lcbp.org/grants. Volunteer peer reviewers will evaluate and rank the proposals, and will develop the funding recommendations for the Lake Champlain Steering Committee to consider.
The Lake Champlain Basin Program’s local grant programs have helped to fund efforts that benefit the Basin’s water quality, fisheries, wetlands, wildlife, recreation, and cultural resources. Since 1992, LCBP has awarded more than $8 million to more than 1,100 projects in New York and Vermont. LCBP Director Eric Howe said, “These grants support the critical work that local organizations do to protect water quality and natural resources in the Lake Champlain Basin special. Without these funds, the progress that has been in protecting and restoring Lake Champlain would not be possible.”
In 2016, the LCBP awarded 71 local implementation grants, totaling more than $690,000. These grants supported a variety of projects through the New York and Vermont portions of the watershed, including:
- The Champlain Watershed Improvement Coalition of New York (CWICNY) has started a School Rain Harvester Project that will capture roof runoff from a school in each of the five counties on the New York shore of the Lake Champlain watershed. The cisterns will be installed at public schools or education centers allowing each local community to see the benefits of the harvesting system.
- Friends of the Winooski River is reducing stormwater runoff and pollutants entering Joiner Brook in Bolton, Vermont. Funds will be used for a project at Smilie School to install a rain garden and a stormwater bio-retention area, and to renovate a river access road to reduce compaction, and encourage infiltration.
- The Ausable River Association hired a river steward for the 2017 angling and river recreational season. The steward educates the public about aquatic invasive species prevention on-stream and at public events, monitors the river’s condition for presence or absence of AIS, distributes educational materials, and maintains wader wash stations across the watershed.
- Paul Smith’s College Adirondack Watershed Institute Stewardship Program conducted watercraft inspection and AIS monitoring efforts at locations in the headwaters of the Lake Champlain Basin, including Lower Saranac Lake and Lake Flower. Stewards prevent the spread of AIS by performing careful inspections of all watercraft launched and retrieved, and by educating the public in order to increase visitor understanding of AIS issues and spread prevention measures.
- The Lake Champlain Maritime Museum (LCMM) has developed a “Stem to Stern” interactive and discovery-based curriculum guide that integrates into school-based programs the themes of forest stewardship, woodcraft and waterways and their role in regional history and contemporary life.
For a complete list of grants awarded in 2016, please visit www.lcbp.org/2016-grant-awards. For further information about these grant opportunities or to obtain hard copies of the guidelines and applications, please contact the Lake Champlain Basin Program office, 54 West Shore Road, Grand Isle, VT 05458 or call at (802) 372-3213 or call (800) 468-5227.