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Brian Abbott Fish Barrier Removal Board (BAFBRB) Grant Program

Grants to Washington Nonprofits, Agencies, and Landowners
to Improve Fish Migration Eligible Regions

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Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)

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Grants to Washington nonprofit organizations, local and state agencies and districts, private landowners, and Tribal governments for projects that improve fish migration in eligible regions. A Letter of Intent must be submitted for review and approval before submitting an application. Funding is intended for restoration and planning projects to remediate barriers to fish passage in salmon recovery regions and designated priority watersheds.

The duty of the Fish Barrier Removal Board (FBRB) is to identify and expedite the removal of impediments to anadromous fish that are caused by state and local roads and highways, and barriers owned by private parties. Grants are intended to leverage fish passage investments that have been made by the Washington Department of Transportation, forest industry, local governments, and other entities by funding barrier corrections near or in coordination with other fish passage investments.

The FBRB funds projects along the following two pathways:
  • Coordinated Pathway: This pathway targets projects near other current or recently completed barrier correction projects. The purpose of this pathway is to leverage and support existing efforts.
  • Watershed Pathway: This pathway prioritizes barriers in geographically discreet, locally prioritized, stream reaches and sub-basins that will have the largest benefit to salmon at a population scale.
A proposal may be for either of two project types: Planning (design-only), or Restoration (construction):
  • Planning projects that are approved for funding will be developed to full design.
  • Restoration projects that are approved for funding will be constructed within the grant award period.

Typical Restoration and Planning Activities that provide or improve fish migration upstream and downstream of road crossings, dams, and other in-stream barriers:

  • Removing a culvert or bridge
  • Replacing barrier culverts with fish passable culverts or bridges
  • Removing barriers (small dams, logjams)
  • Constructing fishways
  • Planning for a project to remove a barrier

For a project to be considered:

  • The project must correct a complete or partial barrier to anadromous salmonids, as defined in the WDFW’s Barrier Assessment Manual (linked provided in Resources below). 
  • Restoration (construction) projects must have recently completed preliminary-level designs submitted with the final application, unless the total requested amount is less than or equal to $500,000. Preliminary design deliverables are described in Manual 22, Appendix C-2. 

Itemized lists of eligible expenses may be found in Manual 5, Restoration Projects and Manual 7, Long-Term Obligations. 

This RFP is for statewide projects and projects in designated priority watersheds (See Manual 22: Appendix A). The FBRB expects the participants in priority watersheds to continue implementing projects from their approved and prioritized lists in future grant rounds. If lead entities or salmon recovery regions want to propose new projects in their designated priority watersheds that are not included in the FBRB-approved lists, or to change their designated priority watersheds, they must work with their WDFW fish passage biologists to get FBRB approval.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 187467

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Grant Limits: None for most projects. Design-only projects have a $200,000 grant limit.

Term of Contract:

For restoration (construction) projects, sponsors have about three years after the Legislature approves funding (typically, July 1 of odd-numbered years) to complete projects.

For planning (design-only) projects with no match, sponsors have 18 months to complete the project if the grant is $200,000 or less. If the grant is more than $200,000, then sponsors have two years to complete the project.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible Applicants:
- Local agencies
- Native American tribes
- Nonprofit organizations
- Private landowners
- Regional fisheries enhancement organizations
- Special purpose districts such as port, park and recreation, conservation, and school districts
-State agencies

A project sponsor may be the landowner where the fish passage barrier exists or a third party. If landowners do not have extensive knowledge in implementing fish passage projects, they are strongly encouraged to use a third party. WDFW and RCO staff can help landowners find a third party organization, which includes regional fisheries enhancement groups, conservation districts, local governments, tribes, state agencies, and nonprofit organizations involved in salmon recovery.

Ineligible Projects:
- Acquisition of property through full fee interest or permanent easement
- Capital facilities and public works projects, such as sewer treatment facilities, surface and storm water management systems, and water supply systems
- Costs to apply for a Brian Abbott Fish Barrier Removal Board grant
- Effectiveness monitoring costs associated with a project, including purchase of equipment to monitor a Salmon Recovery Funding Board restoration or acquisition project
- Forest practices (Road Maintenance and Abandonment Plans) covered by the Forest Practices Act or the Forest and Fish Agreement, except when they are on forested lands owned by small private landowners
- Leasing of land
- Lobbying or legislative activities
- Mitigation projects, activities, or funds
- Monitoring, maintenance, and stewardship as stand-alone projects
- Operation or construction of fish hatcheries
- Projects identified as mitigation as part of a habitat conservation plan approved by the federal government for incidental take of endangered or threatened species
- Projects that do not address a fish barrier
- Projects with a full barrier (0% passable) downstream are ineligible

Pre-Application Information:

Timeline and Deadlines:
- Request for Applications: November 1, 2019
- Application Letter of Intent Due: January 15, 2020
- Technical Team Review: January 1, 2020 to March 31, 2020
- Invitation to Submit Final Application: April 1, 2020
- Final Application Deadline: May 15, 2020
- Board Reviews Final Applications: May 15, 2020 to July 31, 2020
- Board Submits Ranked List to Legislature: August 1, 2020
- Grant Awards Announced: June 30, 2021 (estimate)

Review process:
The Board is facilitated by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. Board members, with technical oversight from Department of Fish and Wildlife’s fish passage and engineering staff, evaluate and rank grant applications and submit a a prioritized list of projects to the state Legislature for funding consideration biennially. RCO manages grant agreements for all projects that receive funding.

Match Requirements:
For Restoration (construction) projects, a minimum of 15 % match of the grant award is required. For Planning (design only ) projects, match is not required if the funding request is less than or equal to $200,000 and final designs are completed within 18 months of funding approval; time extensions are not allowed. If the funding request for a Planning project is greater than $200,000, then 15 % match of the grant award is required and final designs must be completed within two years; time extension requests may be considered. Matching resources may include cash, bond funds, grants (unless prohibited by the funding authority), in-kind labor, equipment, and materials. For more information on match and reimbursements, see Manual 8 (link provided in Resources section).

The FBRB is a reimbursement grant program, meaning the sponsor pays the bills first and then submits expenditure documentation to RCO for reimbursement for the amount expended, including match. RCO Manual 8, Reimbursements, describes in detail the reimbursement policies. Manual 5, Restoration Projects describes eligible construction and administrative costs.

Invited Applications:
Proponents of eligible projects will be invited to submit an Application into PRISM, RCO’s online grant management system (link provided in Manual 22).

Links to required forms are available at:

Contact Information:

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

Proposal Submissions:
To submit a project for consideration, applicants will e-mail Proposal materials as a single, complete package to

Application Portal (by invitation only):

Matt Curtis
WDFW FBRB Program Manager

Cade Roler
WDFW FBRB Technical Review Lead

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
Natural Resources Building
1111 Washington Street SE
Olympia, WA 98501

(360) 902-2534
(360) 902-2946 Fax
Relay Service for Hearing Impaired: (800) 833-6388

Mailing Address:
PO Box 43200
Olympia, WA 98504-3200

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Washington

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