Invasive Species Grant Program - Public Awareness Projects
This program has closed for 2012.
The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Invasive Species Program offers Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Grants. These Grants are intended to help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species, especially zebra mussels and spiny waterfleas, into Minnesota waters. These offers are an opportunity for local entities, such as lake associations, COLAs, watershed districts, and counties to receive state funding and/or partner with the DNR on public awareness initiatives.
Grants are provided to help local entities implement locally focused prevention efforts and to dove-tail those efforts with other ongoing statewide aquatic invasive species prevention efforts. One example of a statewide prevention effort is the Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers! campaign, which is being implemented by the DNR, Minnesota Sea Grant, Wildlife Forever, and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
Description of Grant Offer
Public awareness projects can be done with standard DNR informational materials or with informational materials developed by the successful applicant. Each grant requires a 1:1 match from the grantee. The match for customized public awareness projects can be in cash or in volunteer time, or a combination of both. The match for billboard projects or projects with standardized DNR materials must be in cash.
Public Awareness - Customized Public Awareness Projects
Grants from the DNR can be used to implement local prevention projects. Grantees and DNR staff could work on local projects with bait dealers, local marinas, or dock haulers, or develop new literature and signage. Grantees must pay project expenses up front and make all arrangements. Grantees will be reimbursed for cash expenses up to the grant amount, up to one half of the total project value. Total project value is equal to cash expenses plus the value of volunteer time. Volunteer time is valued at $12.00/hour for unskilled activities and $25.00/hour for professional types of activities.
Example custom products developed by grantees in previous years
- Fish ruler sticker with Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers logo and message
- Babe Winkleman wallet-size message and Lake Minnetonka map
- Custom signs for roads and water accesses (image at right)
- Hubbard County Water Access Map with messages
- Locally produced brochure for distribution to boaters and anglers
- Placemat with aquatic invasive species and Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers information
- Packet of aquatic invasive species information for distribution to resorts.
Public Awareness - Projects with standard designs or audio/video provided
The DNR can provide newspaper, TV, and radio ads. Ad designs can include local grantee names/logos. The grantee must pay all expenses up front and make all arrangements. Grantees will be reimbursed 50% of the project costs, up to their grant amount.
Public Awareness - Billboards coordinated through Wildlife Forever
Grantees propose general billboard locations as part of a statewide collaborative effort. The grantee's name/logo can be included on the billboard. The DNR will coordinate with Wildlife Forever on billboard placement. Wildlife Forever will organize billboard placement throughout the state for maximum impact. Billboards are typically in place for four months.
Grantees must pay for the billboards up front and will be reimbursed 50% of the billboard cost, up to their grant amount.
Approximately $70,000 is available for this grant program. The maximum amount available to any one project is $7,500. This is a competitive grant program. Not all proposed projects will receive funding. Applicants may be offered funding for all or part of their proposed project. All potential projects will be ranked based on the grant criteria listed in the section below.
- Lake associations
- Coalitions of lake associations (COLAs)
- Local citizen groups
- Local units of government (e.g., conservation districts, lake improvement districts, watershed districts, and counties).
- Multi-agency collaboration is allowed but not required.
Grant Criteria for Public Awareness Projects
Proposals will be evaluated by DNR staff within the Invasive Species Program. Proposed projects must focus on the prevention of the spread of aquatic invasive species. Priority will be given to projects that:
- Focus on areas that are known to be popular destinations for boaters leaving spiny waterflea or zebra mussel infested waters (based on past watercraft inspector surveys of boaters).
- Focus on areas near waters infested with zebra mussels and/or spiny waterfleas;
- Focus on areas with high use or popular traveler destination areas and;
- Focus on areas with waters infested with other invasive species (besides zebra mussels or spiny waterfleas).
The final amount of DNR grant offered to cooperators will depend upon:
- The total requested grant amount from all applications
- How well the proposal meets the grant criteria;
- The past history of the grantee on previous prevention grants;
- The relative ranking of the proposal with other proposals.
If you are interested in this grant program, read and submit the 2012 Grant Application for Public Awareness Projects.
February 15, 2012
Deadline to submit proposals. They must be received on or before this day by mail, email, or fax. You may also hand deliver your application on or before February 15th during normal business hours (8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday).
March 5, 2012
All applicants will be notified whether or not their proposal(s) will be funded.
March 31, 2012 through April 15, 2013
Cooperators who receive a public awareness grant are responsible for submitting a summary of accomplishments by June 1, 2013.
Proposals must be submitted on the application forms. Electronic proposals are encouraged. Completed applications should be returned to:
Wendy Crowell, Ecological Resources Grants Coordinator
DNR - Ecological and Water Resources, Box 25
500 Lafayette Road
St. Paul, MN 55155
You will be notified when your application is received. If you do not receive a notification, please contact Wendy Crowell (651-259-5085)
Your Regional Invasive Species Specialists can assist you as you develop your proposed project and fill out a grant application.
Northwest (Park Rapids):
Northwest (Fergus Falls):
Northeast (Grand Rapids):
Central (St. Cloud):
Central (St. Paul):
Southern (New Ulm):
Questions regarding public awareness proposals, Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers signs, and general invasives prevention information:
Invasive Species Prevention Coordinator
Questions regarding the grant process in general:
Ecological Resources Grants Coordinator