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Baseline Water Quality Data Program (BWQDP)

Grants to Pennsylvania Nonprofits, IHEs, Businesses, and
Agencies to Evaluate the Quality of Local Water Resources

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Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED)

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Grants to Pennsylvania nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, for-profit businesses, government agencies, and watershed organizations to evaluate the quality of local water resources. Eligible projects must utilize accepted scientific principles and practices for water sample collection and analysis to document existing groundwater quality conditions on private water supplies.

Act 13 of 2012 establishes the Marcellus Legacy Fund and allocates funds to the Commonwealth Financing Authority (the “Authority”) to be used fund statewide initiatives to establish baseline water quality data on private water supplies using the Baseline Water Quality Data Program (BWQDP). 

Funds may be used by the applicant to pay for any of the following project costs:

  1. Collection, monitoring, sampling water quality data on private water supplies. 
  2. Evaluation, interpretation, and analysis of collected data and the preparation of final reports. 

Specific Collection Requirements:

  1. Private well sampling will require permission from the property owner.
  2. The scope of work must be written by a licensed professional geologist with expertise in hydrogeology. The scope of work should include a description of the sampling protocol, a list of field parameters and analyses, identification of the lab being used for the project, and plans for data reporting, interpretation and storage.
  3. Water quality data should include the parameters contained in PA DEP’s Recommended Basic Oil and Gas Pre-Drill Parameters list.
  4. Sample collection and testing procedures must follow accepted standard practices. All samples shall be analyzed by a PA-accredited laboratory using U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)- approved/accepted drinking water methods.
  5. Attribute data, such as well depth, casing length, date of construction, and estimated yield, shall also be collected and recorded, if known by the private well owner. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 142694

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grants shall not exceed $250,000.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible Applicants
-Councils of Governments
-Authorized Organizations
-Institutions of Higher Education
-Watershed Organizations
-For-Profit Businesses

Ineligible costs include but are not limited to:
-Public relations
-Outreach communications
-Fees for securing other financing
-Interest on borrowed funds
-Application preparation fees
-Other costs incurred prior to the approval of grant funds

For a detailed description of eligible applicants, see

Pre-Application Information:

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the Commonwealth Financing Authority has extended the deadline for Act 13 submissions to July 31, 2020.

The Commonwealth Financing Authority charges a $100 non-refundable application fee for Baseline Water Quality Data Program applications. Payment of the application fee must be completed prior to the certification and submission of the Electronic Single Application.

For this grant program, a 15% cash match of the total project cost is required.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:
For technical inquiries regarding the submission of the on-line application, contact the Customer Service Center at (800) 379-7448 or (717) 787-3405.

Mailing address for applications:
PA Department of Community and Economic Development
Office of Business Financing – CFA Programs Division
Baseline Water Quality Data Program
Commonwealth Keystone Building
400 North Street, 4th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17120-0225

Telephone: (717) 787-6245
Fax: (717) 772-3581

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Pennsylvania

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