Lake Champlain Basin Program Offers $890,000 in Grants for Local Projects

Grand Isle, VT (Sept. 25, 2018) – The Lake Champlain Basin Program seeks proposals for projects that improve water quality and ecosystems in the Lake Champlain watershed. The Program anticipates awarding more than 75 grants totaling more than $890,000 to local organizations, municipalities, and educational institutions. The grants will support projects that advance the goals of the long-term Lake Champlain management plan Opportunities for Action (plan.lcbp.org).

Grants will be awarded in five categories:

  • Pollution Prevention & Habitat Conservation Grants (up to $20,000 per award)
  • Aquatic Invasive Species Spread Prevention Grants (up to $15,000 per award)
  • Small Education and Outreach Grants (up to $10,000 per award)
  • Large Education and Outreach Grants ($15,000 – $50,000 per award)
  • Organizational Support Grants (up to $4,000 per award)

Senator Patrick Leahy, who, as Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, led the successful effort to nearly double EPA funding to the Basin Program this year, said: “I’m proud of the work of the Basin Program to deliver these grant investments to so many partners in Vermont and New York for on-the-ground and in-the-water work to protect and restore the Lake Champlain ecosystem.”

“The Lake Champlain Basin Program is critical to protecting this North Country treasure from invasive species, to protecting its biodiversity, and to strengthening the local economy,” said Congresswoman Elise Stefanik of New York, whose work in the U.S. House of Representatives was instrumental in securing funding for the Program. “In Congress, I was pleased to work across the aisle to nearly double the funding for this program. I applaud my friends at the Lake Champlain Basin Program for announcing these grant opportunities that will go a long way to ensuring that Lake Champlain is protected for generations to come,” said Congresswoman Stefanik.

Congressman Peter Welch of Vermont, whose work in the U.S. House of Representatives also was instrumental in securing funding for the Program said, “Lake Champlain is one of the natural wonders of New England and an international treasure. It is central to our cultural heritage and natural history, and an invaluable recreational and economic resource. These grants will allow the Lake Champlain Basin Program to advance its critical mission of protecting and preserving this great lake for generations to come.”

Local organizations play a critical role in implementing projects on the ground to achieve water quality and habitat protection goals. Since 1992, LCBP has awarded more than $8 million to more than 1,100 projects in New York and Vermont. Recent projects supported by the local grant program include:

  • Development of a Master Naturalist Program and Outdoor Classroom in Grand Isle, Vermont;
  • Shoreline stabilization and runoff reduction using green stormwater infrastructure in Putnam Town Park in New York;
  • Preparation of a plan to upgrade a wastewater treatment plant in Fort Ann, New York;
  • Mapping of sanitary sewer infrastructure and development of a stormwater master plan for Vergennes, Vermont;
  • Stationing of two boat launch stewards on Missisquoi Bay in Québec;
  • Development of a paddlers’ trail on the Lamoille River in Vermont;
  • Tracking of sources of bacteria pollution to Cumberland Bay in Plattsburgh, New York.

LCBP Director Eric Howe said, “The local implementation grants program allows the LCBP to prioritize resources and target funds to projects that will have the greatest impact on clean water, healthy ecosystems, and quality of life in the watershed.”

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 the proposals and develop the funding recommendations for the Lake Champlain Steering Committee to consider. Electronic versions of proposals must be received by grants@lcbp.org no later than 4:30 pm on November 20th, 2018.

These grants are supported by funds awarded to the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission on behalf of the Lake Champlain Basin Program by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Great Lakes Fishery Commission.

The Lake Champlain Basin Program coordinates and funds efforts that benefit the Lake Champlain Basin’s water quality, fisheries, wetlands, wildlife, recreation, and cultural resources. The program works in partnership with federal agencies, state and provincial agencies from New York, Vermont, and Québec, local communities, businesses, and citizen groups. These partners have led a collaborative, non-partisan effort to address water quality and environmental challenges that cross political boundaries. For further information about the program, contact the Lake Champlain Basin Program, 54 West Shore Road, Grand Isle, VT at (802) 372-3213 / (800) 468-5227 or visit www.lcbp.org.

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