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Grants to Wisconsin Public and Private Agencies and Marinas for Leisure Boat Facilities

Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) Program


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
Array ( )

Geographic Focus
USA: Wisconsin

Important Dates
Deadline: 06/01/23 11:59 PM Save

Grant Description
Grants to Wisconsin public and private agencies, marinas, and other facilities to build, rehabilitate, or maintain boating facilities for leisure boats requiring short-term docking accommodations. Applicants may propose smaller projects funded on the state level or larger projects that are competitively ranked at the national level.

Tier 1: Projects are competitively ranked within the state.

Tier 2: Projects are competitively ranked at the national level.

Funds will be provided for:

  • Construction, renovation, and maintenance of boating infrastructure tie-up facilities, solely for transient recreational vessels 26 feet or more in length.
  • Produce information and education materials specific to BIG or BIG-funded projects. (i.e. charts, cruising guides, and brochures).

Some examples of potentially eligible activities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Boat slips, piers, mooring buoys, dinghy or courtesy docks, day docks and gangways;
  • Fuel stations, restrooms, showers, utilities, laundry facilities and similar amenities;
  • Lighting, communications, buoys, beacons, signals, markers, signs and security features;
  • Planning, permitting, engineering, cultural, historic and environmental studies or assessments;
  • Equipment and structures for collecting, disposing of or recycling liquid or solid waste from eligible vessels or for eligible users;
  • Retaining walls, bulkheads, pilings and living shorelines;
  • Debris deflection structures or water hazard removal;
  • Dredging necessary to fulfill the purpose and objectives of the project;
  • Maintenance of facilities during the project period;
  • Repair or restoration of roads, parking lots, walkways or other surface areas damaged as a direct result of BIG-funded construction; and
  • Administration, coordination, and monitoring of BIG awards.

Special Conditions or Requirements:

  • Facilities constructed, operated, or maintained with grant funds must offer reasonable access for all transient recreational vessels for the full period of their useful life.
  • Facilities must be open to the public during reasonable time periods.
  • Entities may charge fees. Fees must be comparable to the prevailing rate in the area.
  • New construction and renovations must be designed to last throughout its useful life.


  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria
Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) Program funds are available to public and private agencies, marinas and other facilities that provide transient tie-up (15 days or less) opportunities for large recreational boats 26 feet or more in length.

An application is ineligible for funding if it proposes to:
- Implement or support law enforcement activities;
- Significantly degrade or destroy valuable natural resources or alter the cultural or historic nature of the area;
- Support operations of a BIG-funded facility including routine custodial activities, service worker salaries, facility administration, utilities, rent, taxes or insurance;
- Develop a state program plan to construct, renovate or maintain boating infrastructure;
- Acquire land or any interest in land;
- Construct, renovate or maintain roads or parking lots, except as described at § 86.11(a)(1);
- Construct, renovate or maintain shops, stores, food service or other retail businesses, lodging, facility administration or management;
- Construct, renovate or maintain facilities for boat transportation, storage, repair or other services;
- Purchase or operate service boats to transport boaters to and from mooring areas;
- Conduct certain marketing activities that do not focus on BIG or the BIG-funded facility (see § 86.16(a)(8);
- Purchase supplies and other expendable personal property not directly related to achieving the project objectives; and
- Support other activities that are inconsistent with the purposes of BIG or that are inconsistent with Federal Cost Principles (see 2 CFR part 200, subpart F).

Pre-Application Information
Grant application materials must be submitted by 11:59 p.m., June 1.

Before applying, you should:
- Read Program Guidance for U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Subaward Grant Program: Clean Vessel Act, Boating Infrastructure Grant, and Sportfish Restoration For Boat Access and Fishing Piers [PDF]; and
- Contact the grant program manager to discuss your project prior to submitting the program application.

These grant programs are administered as reimbursement programs.

For successful applicants, costs incurred after submitting the application and prior to receiving the signed grant agreement from the Department are not eligible for reimbursement unless they have received approval as pre-award costs by the Department and USFWS. Costs incurred after the end date of the grant agreement are not eligible for reimbursement.

BIG grants require a minimum of 25% matching funds, federal share not to exceed 75% total costs.

Estimated Size of Grant
Tier 1 - State: Provides up to $200,000 per year to each State.
Tier 2 - National: Provides up to $1,500,000 per project.

Term of Contract
Applicants typically will have two years to complete projects, beginning with the start date of the grant agreement.

Contact Information
Email applications to

For additional information about the Boating Infrastructure Grant Program, please contact:
Faith Murray
Grant Program Manager
WI Department of Natural Resources
2984 Shawano Ave
Green Bay, WI 54313

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