Water News

Arizona Game and Fish Offers Grant Money to Improve Public Boating Facilities

The Arizona Game and Fish Department anticipates offering $660,000 in federal grant money to enhance and improve public boating facilities at Arizona lakes and waterways.

“If you enjoy boating on Arizona waters, this money is specifically for improving that kind of recreation. Every year, the department makes grant funds available to applicants who wish to complete boating facility projects that otherwise might not receive funding. This is the opportunity to apply for these grants,” says the Game and Fish Department’s boating facilities program manager, Ron Christofferson. 

The funds currently available are through the Clean Vessel Act and the Boating Infrastructure Grant. These federal programs focus on pumpout facilities for on-board restrooms, as well as boating facilities specifically intended to accommodate watercraft over 26 feet in length. Funding for the grants is provided by federal taxes on the sale of equipment related to fishing and boating, and on motorboat fuel.

Many such projects have been completed in Arizona over the past decade, ranging from renovating and building new courtesy docks, pumpout stations and restrooms, to adding new marine fueling stations. Such improvements have previously been implemented at Canyon and Bartlett lakes, as well as Lake Pleasant and Lake Havasu.

“This is an outstanding example of a program where the people who pay fees and taxes directly benefit from the grant funding. In this case, anglers and boaters pay taxes on fishing tackle, equipment and motorboat fuel. Then, this money is allocated annually to each state to support boating access projects anglers and boaters can enjoy,” says Christofferson.

Agencies, marinas and individuals eligible for the grant money are those with legal ownership or control of public boating facilities on any Arizona public waterway where boats are allowed.

Grant funds are awarded through a competitive application process, and applications are reviewed and judged on the basis of priorities, project feasibility, and overall merit as they relate to the current needs of the boating public. No state funding is currently available through these programs. 

For more information on how to apply for the grants, visit the department’s boating facilities web page at http://www.azgfd.gov/outdoor_recreation/boating_facilities.shtml.

Image courtesy Arizona Game and Fish Department

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