Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today announced more than $7.5 million in competitive grants to 10 states for 11 projects to support recreational boating through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Boating Infrastructure Grant program.
“Recreational boaters and anglers contribute to our nation’s thriving outdoor recreation economy and play an important role in conservation of our rivers, watersheds and oceans,” Secretary Salazar said. “These competitive grants will help provide quality opportunities and access to America’s great outdoors for our nation’s boaters and anglers, while creating jobs by funding major construction projects to build docks, boat slips and facilities.”
Outdoor recreation, including boating and fishing, contribute an estimated
$730 billion to the U.S. economy each year, Salazar noted.
The Service will also release approximately $2.5 million to 26 states, commonwealths, and territories willing to match a smaller, non-competitive grant program known as “BIG Tier 1” funding.
Grantees use Boating Infrastructure Grant funds to construct, renovate, and maintain facilities with features for transient boats (those staying
10 days or less) that are 26 feet or more in length and used for recreation. Grantees may also use funds to produce and distribute information and educational materials about the program and recreational boating.
Funding for the Boating Infrastructure Grant program comes from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, formerly known as the Aquatic Resources Trust Fund, which boaters and manufacturers support through excise and other taxes on certain fishing and boating equipment and boat fuel.