Match requirements will vary according to project and applicant type, as follows:
- Applicants for water strategy and project design projects with ecological benefits must provide at least 25 percent of total project costs via cash and/or in-kind contributions, as detailed on pages 26 of the NOFA file
- Matching funds are not required for water strategy and project design projects that provide domestic water supplies to disadvantaged communities, as detailed on page 25-26 of the NOFA file
- Matching funds are not required for applicants located in the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, or the U.S. Virgin Islands
- Applicants for all other projects must provide at least 50 percent of total project costs via cash and/or in-kind contributions
Matching funds from sources outside the applicant’s organization must be secured and available to the applicant prior to award.
The following may not be used as a match:
- Other sources of federal funding, unless authorized by federal statute
- Cost or value of third-party in-kind contributions that have been, or will be relied on, to satisfy a cost-sharing or matching requirement for another federal financial assistance agreement, a federal procurement contract, or any other award of federal funds
Approximately $35 million is available to support approximately 60 to 70 awards through this program and the funding agency's WaterSMART Planning and Project Design Grants: Drought Contingency Planning program, known in eCivis Grants Network as US15848. Awards under this program are expected to range from $100,000 to $400,000 for water strategy projects and project design projects. Awards under this program will be made as grants or cooperative agreements, as applicable to each project.
In general, applicants may receive no more than a cumulative total of $1.2 million per fiscal year under this program and the funding agency's WaterSMART Planning and Project Design Grants: Drought Contingency Planning program; however, applicants for project design projects may receive up to a cumulative total of $2 million if each project includes a different partner.
In addition to providing monetary awards, this program may provide technical assistance to award recipients. Applicants planning to receive technical assistance must account for these costs in the budget. Applicants requesting technical assistance must contact the appropriate program coordinator, using the information provided in the Contact section, to discuss the request prior to submitting an application.
For FY 2023, award notifications are expected to be made in March 2024, and awards are anticipated to be made on July 1, 2024. Projects must be completed by June 30, 2027.
For FY 2024, award notifications are expected to be made in in October 2024, and awards are anticipated to be made on April 1, 2025. Projects must be completed by March 31, 2028.
For water strategy projects, award recipients must submit their draft strategy to the funding agency for review and feedback within 120 days prior to the end of the project period.
Project design projects must involve the final design of medium- and large-scale on-the-ground water supply construction, water management construction, and restoration projects. For the purposes of this program, medium- and large-scale water management construction and restoration projects are defined as projects with construction/restoration costs of at least $250,000 and above.
Pre-award costs may be allowable, as detailed on page 42 of the NOFA file.
For water strategy projects, activities that would be considered development or modification of decision support tools to support the overall strategy development may be allowable if such activities are integral to the strategy and such costs are limited to 30 percent of the total project cost.
For water strategy projects, the costs of legal analysis activities are limited to 30 percent of the total project costs. Funds may not be used for costs of legal analysis for the preparation of a specific water court case.
For water strategy projects, activities that would
be considered measurements, monitoring, or field work that are necessary to complete technical analyses may be eligible for funding so long as such costs are limited to 30 percent of the total project cost and the applicant includes funding in the budget for related environmental and cultural resources compliance costs.
Funds may not be used for:
- Developing appraisal investigations, system optimization reviews, feasibility studies, special studies, basin studies, and water management and conservation projects for planning and project design that are eligible for funding under the funding agency’s Water Conservation and Field Studies Program or Rural Water Program
- Design of projects considered normal operations, maintenance, and replacement (OM&R), as detailed on pages 29-30 of the NOFA file
- Conducting a pilot study to evaluate technical capability, economic feasibility, or viability for full-scale implementation, or to test an unproven material or technology, except for pilot projects that are a component of a water strategy project
- Design of on-farm improvements
- Completing on-the-ground construction
- Projects or activities that are funded under another federal financial assistance agreement
- Lobbying activities
- Application preparation and submission costs