Leahy Announces $3 M. For Local Water Quality, Fisheries And Ecosystem Restoration Work

Timely Investments That Also Will Help Ongoing Environmental Recovery And Stablization Efforts In Irene's Wake

BURLINGTON, Vt. (FRIDAY, March 2) – Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday announced $3 million in new funding for a wide range of locally managed water quality, fisheries and ecosystem restoration work on Lake Champlain during the coming year.

The federal dollars, just recently confirmed, are part of the newly enacted federal budget for this federal fiscal year.  Leahy is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and the funds he secures for Vermont have long been the main engine for cleanup efforts involving the Lake and its watershed.

Leahy was joined by Vermont Secretary of Natural Resources Deb Markowitz and other state and federal officials and by dozens of leaders of local watershed groups in making the announcement at the ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center at the Leahy Center for Lake Champlain on Burlington’s waterfront.

While allocation of the newly secured funds will be decided over the next several months, Leahy also announced an immediate opportunity of $450,000 in grants now available through the Lake Champlain Basin Program, drawing on past years Federal funding from the Great Lakes Fishery Commission and the Environmental Protection Agency.  The deadline for applying for these funds is March 27, and the maximum grant award will be $15,000, meaning that at least 30 grants are likely to be awarded.

Leahy chairs the Senate committee that oversees the budget of the Great Lakes Fishery Commission and for many years has supported commission funding of sea lamprey control on Lake Champlain.  This new funding round ensures that the highly successful sea lamprey control program will continue for another year.  In recent years GLFC funding for Lake Champlain has grown well beyond the needs of the sea lamprey control, and the announcement Friday brings the three year total to more than $10 million.  The funds provided through Leahy’s work are flexible funds and can be directed to points of maximum impact paying for agricultural runoff prevention projects, research into salmon and lake trout restoration, wetlands and stream bank conservation projects and more. 

Towns, watershed groups, lake associations and conservation organizations have the opportunity to compete for a portion of the funds through the Lake Champlain Basin Program’s “Local Implementation Grants” effort, which has funded more than 700 small grants over the years.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency also supports these grants, bringing $2,399,000 to Lake Champlain programs this year.  

The Intervale Center in Burlington received a grant of $3000 in the most recent round to support  the project’s native plant nursery, which produces conservation planting materials that are used in lakeshore and stream bank stabilization projects throughout the  region.

Leahy said, “I am delighted to help support these grants.  We continue to need large-scale and sustained work projects to clean up Lake Champlain, but some of our most effective work comes from these dollars invested in towns, watershed groups, lake committees and conservation organizations to leverage their capacity to work in their own back yards and farm fields.”

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List Of Awards Under Prior Rounds Of Local Partnership Grants –

Vermont Local Partnership Grants in 2010



LCMM Diving Support for Rapid Response to Eradicate Asian Clam Infestation in Lake George

No abstract given

Amount: $24,977

Lake Champlain Maritime Museum

4472 Basin Harbor Rd.

Vergennes, VT 05491-9192

(802) 475-2022


Paddler Specific Aquatic Invasive Spread Prevention Signage/Outreach Project

The Northern Forest Canoe Trail focuses on collection of field data and the implantation of developed products on the segments of the trail that lay within the Lake Champlain Basin.

Amount: $21,425

Northern Forest Canoe Trail
PO Box 565
Waitsfield, VT 05673-0565
(802) 496-2285


AIS Spread Prevention and Early Detection through Watershed Stewardship

The LCBP AIS (aquatic invasive species) Spread Prevention Grant will help to underwrite the cost of the Watershed Stewardship Program’s watercraft inspection and AIS monitoring efforts at the headwaters of the Lake Champlain Basin. Stewards are responsible for preventing the spread of AIS through inspections of watercraft used at these sites.

Amount: $24,750

Paul Smith's College
PO Box 265
Paul Smiths, NY 12970-0265
(518) 327-6342


Richmond Floodplain Forest Restoration Project

Richmond is home to a State-Significant Silver Maple-Ostrich Fern Floodplain Forest. This area is threatened by the infestation of invasive non-native plans. This grant will allow for the application of herbicide on these infestations and purchase equipment and supplies to help treat new infestations.

Amount: $13,761

Town of Richmond
PO Box 385
Richmond, VT 05477







Echo Lake Invasive Species Spread Prevention Project

This project will help prevent the spread of invasive aquatic species in Echo Lake by selective harvesting. The project will consist of several phases including monitoring the lake to identify areas where invasive species have become established, conduct harvesting by divers and volunteers, and to evaluate the success of these phases.

Amount: $7,700

Echo Lake Property Owners Assn
584 Delancey Rd
Brandon, VT 05733


Northern Champlain Aquatic Invasive Early Detection and Control

This grant will allow for the Northern Champlain Aquatic Invasive Early Detection and Control to undertake a survey of aquatic plants in Missiquoi Bay to meet a variety of objectives including documenting the occurrence of various species, map the location of these invasive species within the bay, and establish a plan to deal with the aquatic invasive species.

Amount: $22,950


Lake Champlain Committee
208 Flynn Avenue, Bldg. 3, #3F
Burlington, VT 05401-8420


Boat Access Greeter Program

This grant will be used to fund a boat access greeter and an educational program on invasive species at the boat access locations for Lake Dunmore and Fern Lake. The program will have three components including courtesy inspections for boats, the distribution of educational material to lake users, and the construction of two permanent kiosks to display educational material.

Amount: $11,350

Lake Dunmore Fern Lake Assn.
PO Box 14
Salisbury, VT 05769-0014


Lake Eden Greeter Program

On Lake Eden there are three boat launches for public use. This proposal is to continue the greeter program that was established in 2009. This will allow for the monitoring of invasive species and the distribution of educational material to the public.

Amount: $13,840

Lake Eden Assn.
PO Box 203
Eden, VT 05652-0203





European Frogbit Spread Prevention Pilot Program – Year 3

This project is informing the public of European Frogbit spread prevention and harvesting interests in the Lake Champlain Basin.

Amount: $16,820

Lewis Creek Association
442 Lewis Creek Rd
Charlotte, VT 0544-59154
(802) 425-2002


AmeriCorps Member Sponsor Match

In August 2010 the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board approved the Franklin Watershed Committee as a sponsor for an AmeriCorps Member. As a member, they will be responsible for to work with the committee for eleven months and work approximately twenty hours a week. To secure the services of the AmeriCorps Member the FWC must pay a sponsor cash match totaling $2,684.00 and the funds from this grant will be used to pay the sponsor cash match.

Amount: $2,684


Franklin Watershed Association
754 Rice Hill Rd
Franklin, VT 05457

Fundraising Plan Development

FMR will work with a fundraising and development consultant to help review the organizations current strategies for fundraising. The consultant will work with the board to create a two year plan and detail the goals for the organization.

Amount: $1,200

Friends of the Mad River

PO Box 255

Waitsfield, VT 05673-0255



Mapping Watershed Improvements in the Winooski Basin

This development grant will be used to install and configure an interactive mapping tool on their website that will allow for the public to identify areas of the watershed where projects have been undertaken to improve water quality, reduce storm runoff, restore habitat, and enter into conservation movements.

Amount: $3,000

Friends of the Winooski River

PO Box 777

Montpelier, VT 05602


Ensuring Long-Term Effectiveness of Intervale Conservation Nursery through Business Planning

As the nursery continues to increase the number of trees available and number and size of planting projects implemented, it is critical that they complete a comprehensive planning process to assess the market and identify the strengths and weakness of the nursery.

Amount: $3,000

Intervale Center

180 Intervale Rd

Burlington, VT 05410



Capacity Building through Monitoring and Assessment

This grant will be used to buy technologically modern equipment for assessing lake conditions such as water depth and fish populations. This will allow for the purchase of an instrument fir the measurement of dissolved oxygen, a GPS locator and a device that will measure the depth of the water.

Amount: $2,755


Lake St. Catherine Conservation Fund

PO Box 52

Wells, VT 05774


Lewis Creek Assn. & Partners Capacity Building

This grant will allow for the improvement of the organization by better serving its community. The association has invested in a website to allow for easier access to local date reports, maps, and plans, for local water quality.

Amount: $3,000

Lewis Creek Association

442 Lewis Creek Rd

Charlotte, VT 0544



St. Albans Area Watershed Association Organizational Support

This grant will allow the St. Albans Area Watershed Association to achieve a stronger operational foundation and use technology to widen their reach within the local community and to increase the number of members. The funds will also allow for the Administrative Coordinator to increase the e-list of members and use social networking sites to reach the community.

Amount: $2,380

St Albans Area Watershed Association
PO Box 1567
St Albans, VT 05478-1567



WNRCD Technology Upgrade Project

This grant will allow for the purchase of a new laptop to be used by the staff. It will also allow for employees to work on-site and remotely. This will allow for the organization to better develop programs and projects throughout Washington and Chittenden counties.

Amount: $2,845


Winooski NRCD
1193 South Brownell Road, Suite 35
Williston, VT 05495


Water Conservation to Reduce P. Inputs to Waste Water Treatment Facilities

The committee will reduce phosphorous inputs to waste water treatment facilities through an outreach program focused on conserving water. Preventing excess use saves the use of resources such as zinc and ultimately conserves energy. Overall the goal of this organization is to help improve water quality in Lake Champlain

Amount: $24,025

Lake Champlain Committee
208 Flynn Avenue, Bldg. 3, #3F
Burlington, VT 05401-8420


McCabe’s Broom Steam Geomorphic Assessment and Corridor Planning

This grant will allow for phosphorous reduction projects and data will be used to identify results and create contacts for the organization.

Amount: $13,500


Lewis Creek Association
442 Lewis Creek Rd
Charlotte, VT 0544-59154
(802) 425-2002

Waterfall Quality Improvements for the Blanchard Beach Outfall to Lake Champlain

This grant will allow for the creating of a highly visible water improvement project that involves an assessment of sources of storm water and pollutants in the drainage area, the development of a restoration plan for a highly degraded urban wetland, the design and implementation of storm water treatment areas, and educational material, including signage, to inform the public about storm water issues and solutions.

Amount: $25,000


City of Burlington Public Works

845 Pine Street

Burlington, VT 05401



Highland Park Stormwater Mitigation

This grant will help address stormwater issues at Highland Park including volume and water quality.

Amount: $23,694


City of Winooski

27 West Allen Street

Winooski, VT 05404



Route 2 Runoff Drainage Repair

To reduce nonpoint source of phosphorous and sediment by installing erosion control, The goal of the organization is to increase the number of users on the trail and currently many find the runoff unacceptable and are discouraged from visiting.

Amount: $17,255


Cross Vermont Trail

29 Main Street, Suite 5

Montpelier, VT 05402


Wetland Restoration and Protection through Wetland Reserve Program Funds in the Lake Champlain Direct and Missiquoi Sub-basins of Lake Champlain

To assist the U.S. DOA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service and project development in the Otter Creek, Lake Champlain, and the Missisquoi Basins of Lake Champlain. Ducks Unlimited will identify wetland restoration opportunities and work with interested landowners to define specific projects.

Amount: $25,000


Ducks Unlimited

1220 Eisenhower Place

Ann Arbor, MI 48108


Lake Carmi Watershed Agricultural Best Management Practices Support

To provide support to the agricultural community regarding practices for managing water quality. They will offer support for local farmers and assessment to appropriate agencies for funding.

Amount: $25,000

Franklin Watershed Association

754 Rice Hill Road

Franklin, VT 05457



Stevens Branch and Dog River Restoration Projects

Plans for their watershed. This grant will allow for the development of restoration projects and volunteer labor.

Amount: $8,175


Friends of the Winooski River

PO Box 777

Montpelier, VT 05602



Reducing Storm water Runoff from Residential Properties in Shelburne, VT

Lake Champlain International will introduce a water quality auditing and certification protocol for residential properties in Shelburne. They will help implement a community-wide education initiative and work with property owners to reduce the impacts of properties on the lake’s water quality.

Amount: $23,400

Lake Champlain International

531 Main Street

Colchester, VT 05446



Missusquoi Water Sampling Program 2011

This grant will support the MRBA and sample river water to detect harmful compounds. Volunteers will also collect samples and run an analysis.

Amount: $3,060


Missisquoi River Basin Association

2839 VT Route 105

E Berkshire, VT 05447



Managing Storm water at the Source

This project will help municipalities address issues of climate change at the local level and install management practices to help manage storm water at the source.

Amount: $23,138

Poultney-Mettowee NRCD

PO Box 209

Poultney, VT 05764






Vermont Maple Producer Mercury Thermometer Replacement Program

To help remove thermometers containing mercury from VT maple producers and disposed of properly. Thermometers replaced will be replaced with digital ones.

Amount: $7,229


UVM Proctor Maple Research CTR

PO Box 233

Underhill Center, VT 05490



Reduced Tillage to Reduce Agricultural Impact on Lake Champlain

This grant will allow for implementing methods for reduced tillage, published material for distribution, and videos that will demonstrate the techniques to other farmers.

Amount: $24,730


UVM Extension

278 South Main Street, Suite 2

St. Albans, VT 05478



Hinesburg Town Forest Erosion Control

This grant will allow for the review of stabilization efforts, the assessment of current conditions, identification, and prioritization of problem areas. Overall, the organization hopes to see a reduction in phosphorous and sediment being loaded into the Huntington River.

Amount: $24,656


Winooski NRCD

1193 South Brownell Road, Suite 35

Williston, VT 05495



On Water Ecology

LCMM will develop new curriculum programs, outreach programs, and on-line curriculum materials. This program will help increase awareness of lake issues and encourages participation in the stewardship of watershed resources for the lake.

Amount: $7,500

Lake Champlain Maritime Museum

4472 Basin Harbor Road

Vergennes, VT 05491







Interpretive Guide to Winooski River Valley

This grant will allow for the development of a guide to the river valley following the Cross Vermont Trail. Materials for guide, research in science and history, creative writing and art, will be created in part by partnering with school class projects and other youth educational organizations.

Amount: $6,625

Cross Vermont Trail

29 Main Street, Suite 4

Montpelier, VT 05410



Voices for the Lake Conservation Correspondent

ECHO wishes to extend the message of their Lake Champlain Basin stewardship to the households within the network of WPTZ and create weekly news segments to provide citizens with information to help do their part to help the environment.

Amount: $7,000


ECHO at the Leahy Center for Lake Champlain

1 College Street

Burlington, VT 05401



Barre-Montpelier Storm Water Education Project

This grant will allow the organization to draw awareness surrounding storm water issues in the area and the impacts it has on rivers and help educate residents on how they can help.

Amount: $4,660


Friends of the Winooski River

PO Box 777

Montpelier, VT 05602



Sharing the Lake’s Story

This grant will allow for the development of four natural history and issues based programs for Across the Fence. The programs will be linked to a community-based outreach program that will provide presentations to business groups, civic organizations libraries, and historical societies.

Amount: $6,600


Lake Champlain Committee

208 Flynn Avenue, Bldg. 3, #3F

Burlington, VT 05401





Richmond Floodplain Forest Restoration Project

This funding will support training and engaging more community members to assist with the organization’s efforts control invasive species and to restore native habitat and natural communities.

Amount: $6,600


Town of Richmond

PO Box 385

Richmond, VT 05477


Watershed Education and Outreach in the Upper Otter Creek

This grant will allow for the Rutland NRCD to continue an education and outreach campaign/program targeted at the storm water impaired Moon Brook and watershed residents in Rutland. This grant will also allow for the design and installation of educational signage at Low Impact Development demonstration projects and include rain gardens plus give an overall better understanding of how LID works to residents.

Amount: $4,480


Rutland NRCD

170 South Main Street, Suite 4

Rutland, VT 05701



Land Use Education and Training Collaborative Development Review Modules

This grant will allow for the development of three training modules in the skills need to address flood hazard issues during the development review process.

Amount: $6,000

Vermont Law School

PO Box 96

South Royalton, VT 05068



Celebrate Champlain 2009, Commemorative Materials

This grant will help fund another successful commemorative festival to help celebrate the anniversary of Samuel de Champlain’s expedition into the lake that today bears his name. The festival is considered a success because it has attracted a wide array of Vermonters, artists, and diplomats from as far away as France.

Amount: $10,000

Burlington City Arts

149 Church Street

Burlington, VT 05410




2109 Time Capsule

This grant will allow for a 2109 Time Capsule to be place in a vault in the 400 Plaza adjacent to Waterfront Park in Burlington. The capsule will contain historical materials as well as items to representative of 2009, and it will be opened in 2106.

Amount: $10,000

Burlington Parks and Recreation

645 Pine Street, Suite B

Burlington, VT 05401



Indigenous Expressions: Contemporary Native Peoples of the Lake Champlain Basin Audio Project

In 2007, as part of the Quadricentennial Celebration, ECHO began partnering with the Basin’s Native American community in both Vermont and New York to develop cultural and historic interpretation. There is still a need in the Basin to elevate the visibility and public education about Native Americans, and through this grant we would build on and extend this amicable and well-established collaborative partnership between ECHO and the Native American community to collect, share, and archive interviews, traditional cultural and natural sounds, and music, to produce a myriad of audio from Native soundscapes

Amount: $10,000 

ECHO at the Leahy Center for Lake Champlain

1 College Street

Burlington, VT 05401



Chansons and Fiddle Tunes: Franco-American Music on Vermont

No abstract given

Amount: $10,000


Vermont Folklife Center

88 Main Street

Middlebury, VT 05753



The Vermont Indigenous Summit

No abstract given

Amount: $9,750


White Pine Association

PO Box 42

Newbury, VT 05051




Exploring 9,000 Years of Human History at Chimney Point

This project will provide public access to historical and archaeological research focused on the dynamic human history of Chimney Point, one of the most significant Native American, Contact period and Colonial area archaeological sites in Vermont.

Amount: $9,973

UVM Consulting Archaeology

111 Delehanty Hall

Burlington, VT 05405



The Vermont Indigenous Ethnobotany Project

This proposal follows up on a heretofore unknown legacy of Native American ethnobotanical practice revealed in VT state recognition application documents, including culinary, medicinal and industrial plant and plant materials collection, the construction of small insulated bark wigwams and larger bark buildings approaching the longhouse in size; ash splint basketry and twined bag manufacture, and two indigenous forms of traditional mound-based horticultural land use using (apparently) unreported local indigenous cultivars. Our proposed project will engage Professor Fred Wiseman, a scholar of prehistoric, historic and modern Abenaki culture and Native American ethnobotany and cultural ecology, to examine these presumably ancient indigenous practices through the use of interview, participant observation, film, experimental replication and collection of documented materials for Lake Champlain Basin museum.

Amount: $9,959

Abenakis Helping Abenakis

158 Whiting Lane

Brownington, VT 05860



Installation of four new computer based oral history listening stations on the steamboat Ticonderoga at Shelburne Museum

The steamboat Ticonderoga is a National Historic Landmark and was the last commercially operating steamboat on the Lake Champlain. She serves as an educational resource and icon of the region’s cultural history for over 100,000 visitors annually. An important part of visitors’ experience of the “Ti” are listening stations with oral histories by people who rode or worked on the “Ti.” This project replaces four outdated and broken analog listening stations with new computer-based units.

Amount: $3,318


Shelburne Museum

PO Box 10

Shelburne, VT 05482



Press Contact

David Carle: 202-224-3693