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Long Island Sound Futures Fund (LISFF)

Grants to USA Nonprofits, Agencies, and IHEs in
Multiple States to Restore and Protect Watershed Resources

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

06/02/20 11:59 PM ET


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Grants to Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, and Vermont nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and educational institutions to protect and restore the health of natural resources in eligible areas. Eligible program areas include improvement of water quality, community resilience, data management, habitat restoration, pollution reduction, education, and monitoring. All proposed projects must be within the Long Island Sound watershed boundary.

All proposed projects must be within the Long Island Sound watershed boundary. The eligibility of projects within portions of the watershed is further restricted by geography depending on the three types of projects.  

  • Habitat restoration projects and community resilience projects must fall within the LISS Coastal Boundary Map. This boundary includes portions of New York (NY) including: Bronx, Nassau, Suffolk, Queens and Westchester Counties, and the coast of Connecticut (CT). 
  • Water quality, education, and fish passage projects may be in any portion of the Sound watershed in CT and NY. 
  • Nitrogen prevention or reduction planning/design and implementation projects may occur anywhere in the Sound watershed of CT, NY, Massachusetts (MA), New Hampshire (NH), and Vermont (VT).

The Long Island Sound Futures Fund (LISFF) is seeking proposals to protect and restore the health and living resources of Long Island Sound (Sound). The program is managed by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation in collaboration with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Long Island Sound Study (LISS), and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Program Priorities

The most competitive proposals will address the strategies and Implementation Actions (IAs) contained within the four themes of the 2015 Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP). The CCMP also identifies three principles that are important to consider in taking any specific action: resilience to climate change, long-term sustainability, and environmental justice. 

  • CCMP Theme: Clean Waters and Healthy Watersheds - Improve water quality by reducing nutrients, combined sewer overflows, stormwater runoff, and point and nonpoint source loading into Long Island Sound through:
    • Water quality projects that result in quantifiable pollutant prevention or reduction.
    • Planning activities that set-the-stage for implementation of such water quality projects.   
  • CCMP Theme: Thriving Habitats and Abundant Wildlife - Protect and restore coastal habitats to maintain resilience and function and to support populations of fish, birds, and wildlife through:  
    • Protecting or restoring quantifiable acres of coastal habitat restored within the 12 habitat types targeted by LISS. Review the LISS Habitat Restoration Guidelines 2017 to inform development of a proposal. 
    • Planning or design to set-the-stage for implementation of such projects.  
    • Fostering diverse, balanced and abundant populations of fish, birds, and wildlife.
  • CCMP Theme: Sustainable and Resilient Communities - Support vibrant, informed, and engaged communities that use, appreciate, and help protect and sustain the Sound; and sustain its ecological balance in a healthy, productive, and resilient state for the benefit of both people and the natural environment through:
    • Public engagement, knowledge, and stewardship.  
    • Coastal projects that enhance community resilience and sustainability.
    • Planning and design that set-the-stage for implementation of resilience projects.   
  • CCMP Theme: Sound Science and Inclusive Management - Manage the Sound using science that is inclusive, adaptive, innovative and accountable through:
    • Citizen science.
    • Data management and integration.

There are different funding categories, each with a different level of support available.

  • Highest Impact Projects
  • Implementation Projects
  • Design/Planning Projects
  • Citizen Science/Water Quality Monitoring
  • Education and Public Participation Grants

For more information on the geographic focus grant categories, see the URL for Full Text link below.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 142753

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

-Highest Impact Projects: Up to $500,000.
-Implementation Projects: Ranging in value from $20,000 to $300,000.
-Design/Planning Projects: Ranging in value from $20,000 to $200,000.
-Citizen Science/Water Quality Monitoring: Ranging in value from $20,000 to $75,000.
-Education and Public Participation Grants Ranging in value from $5,000 to $75,000.

Term of Contract:

Projects must start within six months and be completed within 12 to 18 months after notification of grant award. High Impact Projects must start within six months and be completed within 24 months after notification of grant award. Notification of award is projected to be October/November 2020. Project start dates cannot start before October 1, 2020.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicants include non-profit 501(c) organizations, state government agencies, local government, municipal government, Indian tribes, and educational institutions.

Ineligible applicants include U.S. Federal government agencies, businesses, and unincorporated individuals.

Ineligible Uses of Grant Funds
-Funds may not be used to support ongoing efforts to comply with legal requirements, including permit conditions, and mitigation and settlement agreements. However, grant funds may be used to support projects that enhance or improve upon existing baseline compliance efforts.
-Funds and matching contributions may not be used to support political advocacy, fundraising, lobbying, litigation, terrorist activities or Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations.
-Research projects. Consider the LISS Research Grant Program.
-Development of new educational curriculum.
-Support for fellowships and/or tuition support or reimbursement.
-Marketing efforts serving to generally promote the applicant organization and its initiatives.
-Funding for lunches or snacks, t-shirts and promotional items (e.g., key chains, coffee mugs, pens etc.).
-Stand-alone signs.
-Stand-alone public access projects such as creation of boat launches, fishing piers, public viewing areas, waterfront trails, walkways, and/or fencing are not eligible. Signs and public access may be part of a larger project proposal.
-Support for the same project for more than three consecutive years.

Projects requesting funding under multiple project types such as Preliminary Community Engagement, Planning and Prioritization and Site Assessment and Preliminary Design; or Final Design and Secure Permits and Implementation (design and build) will NOT be considered for funding.

Proposals for habitat restoration projects in the Long Island Sound watershed upper basin states of MA, NH and VT are not eligible under the LISFF. Organizations with such projects are encouraged to apply under NFWF’s New England Forests and Rivers Fund.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Applicant Webinar (NY/CT applicants): 4/7/2020, 2:00pm – 3:30pm, EST
Applicant Webinar Registration (NY, CT):

Applicant Webinar (MA, NH, VT applicants):4/8/2020, 10:00 - 11:30am, EST
Applicant Webinar Registration (MA, NH, VT):

Pre-Application Information:

Dates of activities are subject to change. Please check the program page of the NFWF website for the most current dates and information Long Island Sound Futures Fund.

Full Proposal Due Date: 6/2/2020, 11:59pm, EST
Review Period: Summer 2020
Awards Announced: November 2020

NFWF strongly encourages applicants for design grants to conduct a pre-application meeting with relevant agencies prior to submitting proposals.

Match Requirements: The ratio of matching contributions offered is considered during the review process, and applicants must contribute non-federal matching cash funds and/or in-kind services valued at a minimum of 50 percent of the total project budget.

Contact Information:

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


For more information or questions about this RFP, please contact:

Erin Lewis
Coordinator, Northeastern Region
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation

For issues or assistance with the online Easygrants system, please contact:
Easygrants Helpdesk
Voicemail: 202-595-2497
Hours: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm ET, Monday-Friday.
Include: your name, proposal ID #, e-mail address, phone number, program you are applying to, and a description of the issue.

1133 Fifteenth St., N.W., Suite 1000
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T 202-857-0166 | F 202-857-0162

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Connecticut;   Massachusetts;   New Hampshire;   New York City;   New York;   Vermont

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