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Request for Applications for Watershed Protection and Restoration Grants and Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation Act Grants through the Growing Greener Plus Program

[46 Pa.B. 7047]
[Saturday, November 5, 2016]

 As part of the 2016 Department of Environmental Protection's (Department) Growing Greener Plus Program (Growing Greener), applications are now being accepted for watershed protection and restoration grants. Under 27 Pa.C.S. §§ 6101—6119 (relating to Environmental Stewardship and Watershed Protection Act), the Department is authorized to allocate these grants to a variety of eligible applicants including: counties, authorities and other municipalities; county conservation districts; watershed organizations recognized by the Department who promote local watershed conservation efforts; councils of governments; and other authorized organizations involved in the restoration and protection of the environment in this Commonwealth.

 For the upcoming grant round, the Department is placing a particular focus upon reducing nonpoint source pollution within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. The Commonwealth is committed to reducing nitrogen, phosphorous and sediment pollution from agriculture and stormwater runoff. The Department is particularly interested in projects that implement effective best management practices (BMP) that reduce or eliminate stream impairments, leading to local water quality improvements that contribute to the Chesapeake Bay restoration goals. Beyond the Chesapeake Bay restoration goals, the Department has identified a number of other priorities, including: projects located in regional ''priority'' watersheds that reduce the source of impairment; ''priority'' type activities that lead to water quality restoration or protection; and projects that support the installation of priority BMPs to address priority nonpoint source pollution sources.

 Examples of eligible projects include high priority BMPs such as riparian forest buffers, streambank fencing, erosion/sedimentation and nutrient control practices on cropland, and animal waste storage systems. Additionally, projects that will reduce nonpoint source pollution in watersheds where streams are impaired, projects that will help reduce Total Maximum Daily Load pollutants, and integrating stormwater management into watershed management and water conservation strategies are eligible.

 Through the same application process, applicants can also apply for funding through the Department's Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation Act (SMCRA) Grant Programs and Section 319 Nonpoint Source Grant Program. SMCRA grants are available to various entities including municipalities, municipal authorities and nonprofit organizations for projects meeting SMCRA Set Aside or Bond Forfeiture grant requirements. Section 319 grants focus on funding similar projects to Growing Greener but with special emphasis within targeted watersheds.

 The deadline for submitting applications to the Department's Growing Greener Grants Center (Center) is January 13, 2017. Applications must be postmarked no later than Friday, January 13, 2017. If hand delivered, the package must be received by the Center by 4 p.m. on Friday, January 13, 2017, at the following address. Late submissions will not be considered.

 To request or download an application or obtain more information concerning Growing Greener, visit the Growing Greener web site at www.dep.pa.gov (DEP Keyword: Growing Greener). Persons can send e-mails to GrowingGreener@pa.gov or contact the Center at (717) 705-5400. Written requests should be addressed to the Department of Environmental Protection Grants Center, 15th Floor, Rachel Carson State Office Building, 400 Market Street, P.O. Box 8776, Harrisburg, PA 17105-8776.

PATRICK McDONNELL, 
Acting Secretary

[Pa.B. Doc. No. 16-1910. Filed for public inspection November 4, 2016, 9:00 a.m.]



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