Grants & Financial Assistance: Watersheds & Water Quality

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

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 604 Water Quality Management Planning (water quality assessment and management planning)
  • Stormwater

Project summaries 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.

Tools for Developing S. 319 Proposals

Refer to these materials as you plan your project proposal.

Additional Resources

Proposals for Cleaner Water: A Grant Writing Workshop

In Spring 2016, the Department of Environmental Protection teamed up with MassBays and Bay State Roads to produce a series of workshops for municipal and nonprofit staff, "Proposals for Cleaner Water: A Grant Writing Workshop." Handouts and presentations from the training are below.

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 FFY2018 Grant Round

MassDEP will hold pre-RFR meetings in January 2018 to discuss potential projects before the FFY2018 Request for Responses is issued early in the calendar year. Potential respondents should attend these meetings to discuss ideas for new projects. The meetings will be held on:

  1. Tuesday, January 23, 10 a.m. - 12 Noon at MassDEP's Boston Office
  2. Wednesday, January 24, 10 a.m. - 12 Noon at MassDEP's Worcester Office. (Snow date is Thursday, January 25, 10 a.m. - 12 Noon at the same location.)

See the "Notice of Grant Opportunity" document below for complete details.

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 2003  or the 2016 Small MS4 General Permits, and to reduce stormwater pollution through coordinated partnerships that emphasize resource sharing. 

Additional Resources

Indicative Project Summaries

Past projects conducted with S. 319 and S. 604b grant funds.

Additional Resources

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