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Coastal Partnership Initiative

Through the Coastal Partnership Initiative (CPI), the Florida Coastal Management Program (FCMP) makes federal - specifically, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) funds available on a competitive basis to Florida's 35 coastal counties and all municipalities within the counties' boundaries that are required to include a coastal element in their comprehensive plan. Florida's public colleges and universities, regional planning councils, national estuary programs and nonprofit groups also may apply for CPI funds, if an eligible local government agrees to participate as a partner.

For detailed information on previously funded projects, visit Grant Abstracts or view the Interactive Story Map for project locations and descriptions.

Program Description

The CPI was developed to promote the protection and effective management of Florida’s coastal resources in four specific priority areas:

  • Resilient Communities: The goal of this priority area is to help coastal communities prepare for and respond to the effects of climate change, natural hazards and disasters. Project examples include conducting vulnerability analyses and risk assessments; developing post-disaster redevelopment plans and strategies; restoring coastal wetlands; developing energy strategies; and improving communities' resiliency to coastal hazards.
  • Coastal Resource Stewardship: To promote stewardship and appreciation of fragile coastal resources, applicants may request funds for community-based projects that involve citizens, volunteers and the local government. Project examples include dune and wetland restoration; exotic plant control; coastal cleanups; and environmental awareness initiatives, events and field trips.
  • Access to Coastal Resources: Communities are encouraged to accommodate public access to coastal and marine resources, while protecting fragile and overused environments. Access projects could include developing plans for land acquisition and management; developing site plans for nature trails; developing recreational surface water use policies; removing exotic species and restoring native species; and small-scale capital improvements such as dune walkovers, boardwalks and canoe/kayak launches.
  • Working Waterfronts: Waterfront communities may wish to revitalize, renew and promote interest in their waterfront districts. Examples of projects include developing and implementing a vision plan for a waterfront district; developing architectural standards for waterfront areas; small construction projects such as a boardwalk, observation platform, welcome center or information kiosk; restoring shorelines and wetlands; or implementing other measures that mitigate the effects of natural hazards.

Financial awards are a minimum of $10,000, and awards are limited to no more than $60,000 for construction projects, habitat restoration, invasive plant removal or land acquisition; and no more than $30,000 for planning, design and coordination activities.

Application Timeframe

  • Applications are accepted once a year in response to a "Notice of Availability of Funds" published in the Florida Administrative Register. The application form is available on the DEP website on the Grants page until the application cycle closes on Sept. 25, 2020.

Funding Cycle

  • The funding year typically begins July 1 and ends June 30; however, this timeframe may be shifted if the grant cycle is delayed or postponed. Projects are to be completed within 12 months, no matter when the funding cycle begins.

Eligible Applicants

Matching Requirements

  • Grant recipients are required to provide 100% (1:1) matching funds, which may be cash or in-kind. Match may include the salaries of employees, the value of work time of volunteers, the cost of construction materials, or other supplies and/or services that directly benefit the funded grant project. No more than 50 percent of match may be provided by a third party. Federal funds from any source may not be used as match for any financial assistance from the Coastal Partnership Initiative.

Source of Funds

  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, US Department of Commerce.

How are applications reviewed?

  • CPI applications are reviewed by a technical evaluation committee with knowledge of coastal resource management. All applications are evaluated using the criteria listed below. The highest-rated projects will be considered for funding, subject to the availability of funds from NOAA. 

What are the selection criteria?

  • The project location is clearly depicted on a map.
  • Project description is clearly presented.
  • Project objectives, tasks, deliverables and timelines clearly relate to the project description.
  • There is a demonstrated need the project addresses.
  • Project meets purpose of at least one CPI priority.
  • Applicant demonstrates how the project will benefit coastal resource management.
  • Project is feasible and can be completed within 12 months.
  • Budget and budget narrative clearly show how FCMP funds and match funds will be expended in accordance with paragraph 62S-4.004(2)(d), FAC, and demonstrate a cost relationship to project activities.
  • Project costs are reasonable.

What are the elements of a strong proposal?

  • Reviewers will look for proposals that have the following characteristics:
    • A demonstrated need for the project and clear project description.
    • The proposal ensures or promotes a benefit to coastal resource protection or management.
    • The proposal is technically sound in terms of design and cost-effectiveness.
    • The budget request for the proposed work is appropriate.
    • The work can be reasonably expected to be completed within 12 months.
    • Project meets the goal of at least one of the four CPI priority areas.

What will cause an application to be dropped from consideration?

  • An application will not be considered if it does not include a:
    • Signed and completed Title Page
    • Location Map
    • Work Plan
    • Budget
    • Completed 306A questionnaire, if project proposes construction, invasive plant removal, habitat restoration and/or land acquisition. The questionnaire can be found here or from NOAA here.
  • An application also will not be considered:
    • If it was not received on or before the application deadline
    • If construction is proposed, the applicant did not conduct a preliminary consultation with appropriate local, state, regional and federal regulatory agencies regarding the proposed construction project, and did not include a summary of the required consultation in the CPI application
    • If the property on which construction activities will take place is not publicly owned or if the applicant does not hold a sufficient conservation easement (into perpetuity)
    • If the applicant is a nonprofit organization and the proposed project includes construction, habitat restoration, invasive exotic plant removal, or land acquisition

For more information on Florida Coastal Management Program Grants, contact:

Tiffany Herrin
Department of Environmental Protection
Florida Coastal Management Program, MS 235
3900 Commonwealth Blvd.
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-3000
Phone: 850-245-2953
Email: Tiffany.Herrin@FloridaDEP.gov


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Last Modified:
August 3, 2020 - 2:36pm

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