For Immediate Release: 3/15/2022

Division of Boating and Waterways Offers $4.25 Million in Grants to Enhance Public Safety and Protect California’s Waterways


SACRAMENTO, Calif.—The Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW) is now accepting grant applications to help local public entities enhance safety on California’s waterways and protect them from abandoned and unwanted vessels. The application period for the competitive grant programs, Boating Safety and Enforcement Equipment (BSEE) and Surrendered and Abandoned Vessel Exchange (SAVE), is open from March 15 through April 29, 2022. Interested applicants are encouraged to review the grant guidelines and participate in an applicant workshop.

“With more than four million motorized and non-motorized recreational boaters on California’s waterways, it is important to support local public entities in enhancing public safety and protecting the environment,” said DBW’s Acting Deputy Director Ramona Fernandez. “Collectively we can provide more positive experiences to the recreational boating community.”

In 2021, DBW awarded 25 BSEE grants totaling $1.56 million and 27 SAVE grants totaling $2.75 million. This year, a total of $4.25 million in grant funding is available to eligible applicants.

Below are descriptions of the grant programs and available funding:

BSEE Grant Program
Up to $1.5 million is available to local government agencies that demonstrate a need for patrol boats, engines, personal watercraft, search and rescue equipment, and patrol and diving equipment. These competitive grants are to augment existing local resources and not to fully fund boating safety and enforcement patrol units. The U.S. Coast Guard Recreational Boating Safety Program provides BSEE grant funding.

SAVE Grant Program
Up to $2.75 million is available to local public agencies statewide to receive surrendered vessels and to remove and dispose of derelict vessels on coastal and inland waterways. Grant funding comes from the Abandoned Watercraft Abatement Fund. DBW awards grants on a competitive basis to eligible public agencies based on demonstrated need.

Applications for both grant programs must be submitted to DBW through the Online Grant Application System (OLGA). Prior to applying, the division encourages new applicants to view a 45-minute webinar that provides detailed instructions on creating an account in OLGA as well as navigating the application system. Additionally, DBW is hosting a 90-minute virtual workshop for each grant program to help applicants write competitive applications.

Below is detailed information on the workshops:

BSEE Workshop
Date:              Tuesday, April 5, 2022
Time:             10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Location:       Virtual Webinar
RSVP:            Johanna Naughton via email or (916) 902-8795. 

SAVE Workshop
Date:              Tuesday, April 5, 2022
Time:              1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Location:       Virtual Webinar
RSVP:             Ron Kent via email or (916) 902-8821.

The workshops will be recorded for those unable to participate in the live presentations. Please see contacts above for any questions on the workshops.

Once grant applications have been reviewed and scored, DBW will send out notice of award letters via OLGA. DBW anticipates that awards will be announced by August 2022. Detailed information, including previous grantee recipients, is available on DBW’s website.

Derelict Vessels & Patrol Boat image
SAVE grants assist local public agencies statewide to receive surrendered vessels and to remove and dispose of derelict vessels on coastal and inland waterways. BSEE grants augment local agency resources for patrol boats, engines and personal watercraft, search and rescue, patrol and diving equipment. Photos from Division of Boating and Waterways.

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