The DEQ and Great Lakes Commission today announced $50,000 in grant funds available for volunteers interested in monitoring streams in Michigan.
This year, the Volunteer Stream Monitoring Grant Program will for the first time accept funding proposals for three different types of monitoring. Local units of government and nonprofit organizations are eligible to receive funding under each of the following areas:
• The Aquatic Macroinvertebrate Survey grant supports volunteer efforts to monitor benthic macroinvertebrate communities and habitat characteristics in wadeable streams and rivers. The grant is designed to fund training and water quality data collection, helping state and local efforts to protect and manage water resources. The grant may be used to fund a local monitoring coordinator and/or purchase water quality monitoring supplies. The DEQ and Great Lakes Commission expect to approve multiple grants of about $8,000 to $14,000 for two-year projects.
• The Aquatic Macroinvertebrate Survey start-up grants are for newly forming volunteer monitoring groups. Funds will assist with designing a local monitoring program and strategy, or with developing of a full proposal for a future Volunteer Stream Monitoring Grant Program cycle. Start-up grant recipients have access to MiCorps resources and training. The DEQ and Great Lakes Commission expect to approve multiple grants of about $1,000 to $3,000 for one-year projects.
• The Road/Stream Crossing Inventory grants are new in 2015, and will help monitoring groups establish a volunteer program to assess the condition of stream crossings, and to protect and enhance streams throughout a target watershed. MiCorps will provide training to grant recipients, and the data will be entered into a publicly available database and used by various agencies as a resource allocation tool. The DEQ and Great Lakes Commission expect to approve multiple grants of about $5,000 to $10,000 for one year projects.
The Volunteer Stream Monitoring Grant Program is part of MiCorps, a network of volunteer monitoring programs. Now in its 11th year, MiCorps assists the DEQ in collecting and sharing water quality data for use in water resources management and protection programs. MiCorps has awarded volunteer organizations more than $505,000 in Clean Michigan Initiative grants to assist in water quality assessments.
For more information on the MiCorps Program or these grant opportunities, visit the MiCorps website at www.micorps.net.
Grant application packages, which include grant information and application instructions, are available at www.micorps.net/app/gap15.html, www.micorps.net/app/startup15.html, and www.micorps.net/app/roadstream15.html. Grant applications are due by 1 p.m. Feb. 12.
Questions about the grant application process should be directed to Dr. Paul Steen, Huron River Watershed Council, at 734-769-5123 or firstname.lastname@example.org; or Bill Dimond, Surface Water Assessment Section, Water Resources Division, DEQ, at 517 284-5528 or email@example.com.