Grants & Financial Assistance: Watersheds & Water Quality

These grant programs focus on nonpoint source pollution, management planning, and stormwater.

Table of Contents


Here you will find program guides and other information about grants and loans for:

  • Section 319 Nonpoint Source Grants (prevention, control, and abatement of nonpoint source pollution)
  • Section 604b Water Quality Management Planning (water quality assessment and management planning)
  • Stormwater
  • Water Quality Monitoring

Project summaries for S. 319 and S. 604b grants from past years are also included for reference. 

Section 319 Nonpoint Source Competitive Grants Program

This grant program is authorized under Section 319 of the federal Clean Water Act for implementation projects that address the prevention, control, and abatement of nonpoint source (NPS) pollution. In general, eligible projects must:

  • implement measures that address the prevention, control, and abatement of NPS pollution;
  • target the major source(s) of nonpoint source pollution within a watershed/subwatershed;
  • contain an appropriate method for evaluating the project results; and
  • must address activities that are identified in the Massachusetts NPS Management Plan.

Proposals may be submitted by any interested Massachusetts public or private organization. To be eligible to receive funding, a 40% non-federal match is required from the grantee.

The RFR for the FFY 2020 Nonpoint Source Competitive Projects is posted below, effective April 5, 2019. Proposals are due June 3, 2019. A public information session will be held April 25, 2019, to address any and all questions related to the FFY 2020 RFR. Details can be found within the RFR.

Additional Resources

Tools for Developing S. 319 Proposals

These materials will help you plan your project proposal. 

Additional Resources

604b Grant Program: Water Quality Management Planning

This grant program is authorized under the federal Clean Water Act Section 604(b) for water quality assessment and management planning. Eligible entities include: regional planning agencies, councils of governments, conservation districts, counties, cities and towns, and other substate public planning agencies and interstate agencies. No local match is required.

Additional Resources

604b FFY2019 Grant Round

The Request for Responses for the FFY 2019 grant round has been issued (see under "Additional Resources" below). 

Additional Resources

S. 319 and S. 604b Project Summaries

Brief descriptions of past projects conducted with S. 319 and S. 604b grant funds.

Additional Resources

Stormwater MS4 Municipal Assistance Grant Program

This program, introduced in 2017, enables groups of Massachusetts municipalities to expand their efforts to meet requirements for the 2016 Small Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) General Permits, and to reduce stormwater pollution through coordinated partnerships that emphasize resource sharing.

The FY 2020 Notice of Grant Opportunity and detailed description of the grant program are available below.

A bidders' conference was held on October 17, 2019. Questions and answers from that session are linked below.

Additional Resources

Water Quality Monitoring Grant Program

In the first year of this grant program, MassDEP is seeking proposals from non-profit organizations to build or expand capacity for bacteria monitoring data collection. The intent of this grant program is to enhance the amount and spatial coverage of data used by MassDEP for surface water quality assessment. The FY2019 Notice of Grant Opportunity and detailed description of the grant program are available below.

Additional Resources