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.

The Notice of Grant Opportunity and Pre-RFR information conference information for the fall FFY2022 319 grant round can be found below in Additional Resources. The period for the formal question and answer period for the Fall FFY2022 Section 319 Water Quality Management Grant RFR ended November 10, 2021. We received four questions different from those already included in the RFR. Applicants are suggested to see Attachment C of the RFR for Frequently Asked Questions.The due date for proposals is December 15, 2021.

Additional Resources

Tools for Developing S. 319 Proposals

These materials will help you plan your project proposal. 

Additional Resources

604(b) 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

604(b) FFY2022 Grant Round

Section 604(b) of the federal Clean Water Act established the Water Quality Management Planning Grant Program, a vehicle by which states can provide funds to eligible entities such as: Regional Planning Agencies, Councils of Government, counties, Conservation Districts, cities, and towns, to conduct watershed or sub-watershed based nonpoint source assessment and planning projects.

For FFY2022, MassDEP will focus Section 604(b) grant funds on nonpoint source assessment and planning projects that result in the following:

  1. Development of a Watershed-based Plan (WBP) for local watershed planning and to support future 319 grant implementation projects. An online tool to support development of WBPs can be found at:;
  2. Development of a WBP for the Section 319 Grant's Healthy Watersheds Project, to be used to guide watershed protection and management activities;
  3. Determination of the nature, extent, and causes of water quality problems and determination of pollutant load reductions necessary to meet water quality standards;
  4. Development of preliminary designs and implementation plans that will address water quality impairments in impaired watersheds; or
  5. Development of green infrastructure projects that manage wet weather events to maintain or restore natural hydrology

The FFY2022 Section 604(b) Request for Responses was issued on June 29, 2022 and can be found in the Additional Resources section below. The question period is now open. Questions will be accepted electronically until July 6, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. MassDEP anticipates posting answers on July 13, 2022 in the Additional Resources section of this website.

Important dates for applicants:
Pre-RFR Informational Conference Call: Thursday, June 16, 2022 at 10:00am
RFR posted to MassDEP and COMMBUYS websites: Wednesday, June 29, 2022
Grant Application Deadline: Wednesday, August 17, 2022

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 2022 Notice of Grant Opportunity and detailed description of the grant program are available below.

Additional Resources

Water Quality Monitoring Grant Program

The State Fiscal Year 2022 Request for Grant Proposals (RFGP) is closed. For details on the 2022 Grant Awardees, please see:

Baker-Polito Administration Awards $150,000 in Grants to Help Local Watershed Coalitions Monitor Water Quality

The 2022 solicitation materials are provided below in the additional materials section for informational purposes only.

Additional Resources