Find Nonprofit and Small Business Grants

Advance Search

Only Available for Paid Subscribers
Clear Filters
Search Filters

Grants to Minnesota Nonprofits, Agencies, IHEs, School Districts, and Tribal Governments for Coastal Development Projects

Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program (MLSCP) - Annual Grants


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR)
Array ( )

Geographic Focus
USA: Minnesota: Minnesota waters of Lake Superior; and public (non-federal) land in Minnesota’s coastal area

Important Dates
LOI Date: 09/15/23
Deadline: 12/01/23 Save

Grant Description
Grants to Minnesota nonprofit organizations, local agencies, IHEs, school districts, and Tribal governments for projects that restore, protect, or responsibly develop coastal locations. Applicants must submit a Letter of Intent prior to applying. Some applicants must contact the funding source prior to applying. Eligible projects are those that promote the achievement of coastal management goals or that take place within the coastal area. The project’s principal activities must occur in either the Minnesota waters of Lake Superior or on public (non-federal) land in Minnesota’s coastal area.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is accepting applications for Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program (MLSCP; Coastal Program) Annual grant-funded projects. The projects must protect, restore, or responsibly develop Minnesota’s Lake Superior coastal communities and resources.

Administrative Grants – projects involved in planning for and managing the resources in the coastal zone, for preserving or restoring them for their conservation, recreational, ecological, historical, or esthetic values.

Coastal Resource Improvement Grants – projects include:

  1. The acquisition of fee simple and other interests in land; or
  2. Low-cost construction projects, including but not limited to trails, green spaces, shoreline stabilization, and the rehabilitation of historic buildings and structures.

Resource Improvement projects must meet one or more of the following objectives:

  1. Preserve or restore specific areas because of their conservation recreational, ecological, or esthetic values, or contain one or more coastal resources of national significance.
  2. Redevelopment of deteriorating and underutilized urban waterfronts and ports.
  3. Provide or improve public access to beaches and other coastal areas and waters.
  4. The development of a coordinated process to regulate and issue permits for aquaculture facilities in the coastal zone.

For more information about eligible coastal resource improvement projects:

To be eligible, a project must help achieve one or more of these coastal management goals:

  • Help communities manage development along the Lake Superior coast in a sustainable way (Coastal Community Development)
  • Protect and restore the coastal area’s natural resources and habitats. (Coastal Habitat)
  • Protect lives and property in the coastal area by minimizing risk from natural hazards such as storms, flooding, and erosion. (Coastal Hazards)
  • Research, analyze, and share information that leads to better coastal land and water management by government and citizens. (Coordination and Public Involvement )


Additional Eligibility Criteria
The following types of organizations are eligible to apply:
• Area-wide agency, including a county and/or regional planning agency
• Conservation district
• Institute of higher education (public and nonprofit)
• Joint powers board
• Local units of government (e.g., city, township, county)
• Nonprofit organization
• Port authority
• Public school district
• Sanitary sewer district
• State agency (excluding the DNR)
• Tribal government, communities

Successful applicants must:
1. Comply with applicable local, state, and federal laws.
2. Be eligible to receive state and federal grant funds.
3. Be recommended for funding by the Governor’s Council on Minnesota’s Coastal Program.
4. Be selected by the commissioner of the DNR.
5. Be approved for funding by the Office for Coastal Management, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

DNR generally cannot fund projects that fulfill regulatory requirements. Staff will consult with NOAA as part of the eligibility screening.
- The Foundation cannot fund:
• Wetlands or other habitats created as a condition of a permit or other regulatory action
• Projects at wetland mitigation banks
• General recreation facilities or equipment, such as playgrounds, ball fields, etc.
• Harbor dredging
• Warehouse demolition
• Large-scale hard structure erosion control projects, including breakwater construction
• Beach re-nourishment
• Infrastructure projects related to road, water, and sewer line construction
• Improvements to buildings for rental, lodging, or private property

- The Coastal Program cannot fund projects on private property or activities that support a private business or individual.

Pre-Application Information
- Letters of Intent due – September 15, 2023 11:59 PM Central Time
- Letters of Intent review – October 10, 2023
- Invite to submit full application – October 15, 2023 (estimated)
- Full applications due – December 1, 2023
- Review dates – January 18-19, 2024
- Notice of project selection – February 15, 2024 (estimated)
- Project start – September 1, 2024 (estimated)
- Project end – November 30, 2025
- Products due – December 31, 2025

- Interested applicants must submit a Letter of Intent. There is no limit on the number of LOI you can submit. Applicants submitting multiple LOI must use a unique project title for each LOI. You may send all LOI in one email or multiple emails. You will receive confirmation of receipt via email.
- Full Applications are accepted by invitation only.

- This is a reimbursement grant program. The project sponsor must make the initial outlays for the project and then request reimbursement.
- Match Required: For every grant dollar requested, you must provide a dollar in match (1:1). Match must be local (non-federal) and may be cash or an in-kind contribution.
- Local units of government can apply for a low-cost construction or acquisition project under an Annual grant. If you are interested in applying for such a project, please review the NOAA Section 306A Guidance:, and contact the funding source to ensure eligibility.
- Organization must (at a minimum) maintain a Unique Entity Identifier from the System for Award Management (SAM). SAM is an official website of the U.S. Government. There is no cost to use SAM.
- Multi-organization collaborative projects are welcome; it is not a requirement for grant funding.
- The Coastal Program will post responses to questions online weekly, the last time five business days before the applications are due. See the Full Grant Text RFP link for responses.

Maps and Coastal GIS Resources:

Additional Funding Information

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants
The number of awards to be made will depend on the number of eligible applications received, the amount of funds requested, and the merit and ranking of the applications.

Estimated Size of Grant
- Administrative - the minimum grant request is $10,000; the maximum is $100,000.
- Coastal Resource Improvement - the minimum grant request is $25,000; the maximum is $150,000.

Term of Contract
The DNR will receive the federal award that will fund these projects on or after July 2024. The award will expire December 2025. Applicants should plan for project activities to begin on September 1, 2024, and be complete by November 30, 2025 (15 months).

Contact Information
- Interested applicants must submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) to:
- If for any reason applicants are unable to submit by email, please contact the funding source to make alternative arrangements.

Direct questions to Cynthia Poyhonen, Grants Specialist, (218) 834-1447 or at the above email.

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
Coastal Program Manager: Amber Westerbur
1568 Highway 2; Two Harbors, MN 55616

Grant News
Live Chat Chat Now