Among other items included in the Federal FY 2020 Budget, adopted just before Christmas, Congress appropriated $9.7 million for the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program. This funding will be available to nonprofits and other groups, to support projects to improve water quality, restore wildlife habitat, and provide better public access to waterways and other natural resources. The Basin includes 40% of New Jersey’s land area and 22% of our population. Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New York share portions of the Basin.
The Delaware River Basin Restoration Program is modeled on long-running support for similar ecosystems, such as the Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes. This funding will support eligible applicants in New Jersey and our neighboring States, including government entities, non-profit organizations, and institutes of education implement on-the-ground restoration and conservation projects. Projects will combat critical issues such as overdevelopment, stormwater runoff, flooding, stream erosion, and loss of wildlife habitat.
Since the passage of the Delaware River Basin Conservation Act at the end of 2016, the program has secured funding of $5 million in fiscal year 2018 and $6 million in FY2019, allowing applicants to seek grants of between $50,000 and $250,000 for new project starts. Pursuant to the 2016 Act, funding is meant ‘ …to provide competitive matching grants of varying amounts to State and local governments, nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, and other eligible entities to carry out activities … .’ Those grants are administered through the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
Contact: Jon Moran, Senior Legislative Analyst, email@example.com, 609-695-3481 x121.