The Cities and Towns Municipal Grants Program was also established in 1991 pursuant to MGL c21J and MGL c148 s37A. The purpose is to provide up to 50 percent reimbursement to local jurisdictions for costs they incur in removing and/or replacing underground storage tanks. Cities and towns must first remove and/or replace a tank at their own expense, then file a grant with the program for reimbursement. To date, the program has awarded nearly $9.4 million to governmental bodies.

Grant Program

Funding for the Underground Storage Tank (UST) Program Municipal Grant Program is not available. If funding becomes available in the future, grant applications must be received within 12 months of completing the work for which the grant is being sought. If you decide to file the application during a period when funding is not available, we will hold your application on file until funding does becomes available.

Specific details regarding the grant applications process, eligible costs, and application instructions can be found at the summary webpage. In general, the specific eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • The grant is to be used solely for the removal and/or replacement of USTs only and not remediation.
  • Only one grant application may be submitted per entity per year and must be limited to one location only.
  • Applications must be received within 12 months of completion of the work for which the grant is sought.
  • Grants are divided into four categories and may be subject to a rating system. (see 503 CMR 3.00).

Also, for budgeting and planning purposes, the DOR can provide you with an estimated grant award (subject to available funding) prior to conducting the work. In this case, DOR will calculate an estimated grant award based on bid responses or other detailed cost breakdown information that supports the proposed work (e.g. engineering estimate). However, the actual final grant award will be calculated based on the actual work completed and actual costs incurred.

The grant application forms can be downloaded from the UST Forms webpage; regulations may be obtained at the State Bookstore, telephone 617-727-2834, or unofficial copies through the UST Regulations webpage.

Program Details

  • Regulations cite 503 CMR 3.00.
  • Regulations became effective May 19, 1995.
  • The regulations are only for removal and/or replacement of Underground Storage Tanks (UST's) not remediation.
  • Grants can be up to 50% of eligible costs.
  • Does Not Include State Agencies and Authorities.
  • Does Not Cover Tightness Testing of UST's.
  • MGL 21J funds grants program up to $1 million per year.

Grant Submittals

  • Grants Applications for work performed after May 19, 1995 must be filed within one year of completing work.

Accompanying the Grant Application

  • An Updated FP-290 (For new UST Installations)
  • FP-292 (For UST's Removed )
  • FP-294 ( For Marinas)
  • Permit from Local Fire Department for Consumptive Use Heating Oil Tanks

Grants will be divided into four classifications

Classification 1:

leaking USTs

Classification 2:

closure of fuel storage tanks

Classification 3:

USTs used for public safety, schools, hospitals, emergency generators

Classification 4:

all other USTs

Applications will prioritized based on four categories

Category 1:

construction of UST

Category 2:

age of UST

Category 3:

proximity to water

Category 4:

stored petroleum product

Funding Allocations

  • 40% of funds to classification 1
  • 30% of funds to classification 2
  • 15% of funds to classification 3
  • 15% of funds to classification 4
  • Only one grant application per entity per year.
  • Payment can be made over a period of ten years.

Aboveground Storage Tank Replacement
Work After May 19, 1995 

  • Must provide documentation demonstrating that the selected replacement is equal to or less costly than replacement with a new underground fuel storage tank exclusive of environmental concerns.
  • The maximum amount of eligible costs will be the cost of removal and replacement with an underground fuel storage tank.

Eligible Costs
Only costs directly associated with the UST/AST Installation and/or Removal will be eligible for a grant.


  • Purchase and Installation of New UST
  • Piping Purchase and Installation
  • Sludge/Liquid Disposal from UST Being Removed
  • Backfilling
  • Excavation necessary for UST Removal

Does not include:

  • Dispensers
  • Dispenser islands
  • Lighting
  • Canopies
  • Fire suppression systems
  • Heat exchangers
  • Suction pumps
  • Oil/water separators
  • Inspection tanks
  • Reports
  • Engineering
  • Any other costs the Board determines to be ineligible.

If money from any other source (Chapter 90 money, insurance, etc.) has been sought or received for this project, the Board must be notified (in Section III, Question #4 of the grant application.)

Grant Application Procedure

  • Application must be signed by Chief Financial Officer
  • Include a detail of either the actual costs incurred for the Closure, removal and/or replacement of the Fuel Storage Tank(s) System or estimates of expected costs
  • Both actual and expected costs shall be documented with invoices from contractors qualified to do the work and/or cost estimates from at least two contractors qualified to do the work
  • Proof of payment shall be submitted with grant application and shall be demonstrated by canceled check or contractor affidavit acknowledging payment