The Department of Environmental Protection plans to hold a pre-RFR Informational Meeting to discuss potential projects before the FFY 14 604(b) RFR is issued in early 2015.  We recommend that potential respondents attend this meeting to discuss your ideas for new projects. The meeting will be held in the Commissioner’s Conference Room at MassDEP’s Central Regional Office in Worcester on Tuesday, January 27, 2014 from 10:00 AM to Noon. (Snow date is January 29th at the same location and time. See Central Regional Office for directions. Please note that MassDEP Central Region Office has moved and is now located at: 8 New Bond Street Worcester, MA 01606.)

604b Pre-RFR Meetings Cancelled
Due to the Blizzard predicted for Tuesday into Wednesday and the potential for widespread power outages, the 604b Pre-RFR meetings scheduled for both Tuesday, January 27th and Thursday, January 29th are cancelled.  Additionally, the RFR release date has been pushed back to February 17th.  Potential 604b applicants are encourage to call Gary Gonyea at 617-556-1152 to discuss their ideas for 604b proposals.

For FFY 2015, the Department will continue to focus 604b grant funds towards watershed or subwatershed based nonpoint source assessment and planning projects leading to the: 1) determination of the nature, extent and causes of water quality problems; 2) assessment of impacts and determination of pollutant loads reductions necessary to meet water quality standards; 3) development of green infrastructure projects that manage wet weather to maintain or restore natural hydrology; 4) development of assessments, preliminary designs and implementation plans that will address water quality impairments in impaired watersheds, and 5) development of regional storm-water utilities in regulated and non-regulated communities. Applicants considering development of designs and plans to be considered for 319 implementation funding are encouraged to discuss their proposals with Jane Peirce of the 319 program  at 508-767-2792, jane.peirce@state.ma.us.

MassDEP's assessment needs are identified in:

Pursuant to Section 604(b) of the Clean Water Act, eligible grant applicants must be either Regional Public Comprehensive Planning Organizations or Interstate Organizations.  Eligible entities include: regional planning agencies, council of governments, counties, conservation districts, cities and towns, and other substate public planning agencies and interstate agencies.  MassDEP encourages eligible respondents to propose water quality assessment/planning projects that will lead to direct actions by Municipalities and others to implement water quality improvements.

Respondents should note that MassDEP's Division of Watershed Management Watershed Planning Program (WPP) will concentrate sampling efforts in the Northeast basins (Charles, Ipswich, Merrimack, North Coastal, Parker, Shawsheen, Concord (SuAsCo)) in 2015 and in the Central basin (Millers, Nashua, French, Quinebaug & Blackstone) in 2016. Further discussion of WPP's basin arrangement along with a map of the basin alignment can be found at: Adjustments to Surface Water Monitoring Program .

As the Commonwealth's procurement rules prohibit MassDEP or any other RFR issuer from consulting with potential applicants to develop project ideas once an RFR is issued, potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact MassDEP before the RFR issue date to refine project ideas and obtain feedback. Contact Gary Gonyea (617-556-1152 or gary.gonyea@state.ma.us) for a discussion of ideas and program objectives.

The tentative schedule is as follows:

  • Pre-RFR Informational Meeting (meetings cancelled): January 27, 2015
  • RFR release on COMMBUYS: February 17, 2015
  • Questions submitted: February 27, 2015
  • Responses posted on COMMBUYS: March 6, 2015
  • Responses due to MassDEP: March 27, 2015
  • Evaluation of Responses: April 2015
  • Award Announcements (estimated): June 2015
  • Projects Initiated (estimated): Fall 2015