Division of Boating and Waterways Offers Grants to Help Keep California’s Waterways Clean - $1.17 million available for the deployment of floating restrooms


SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW) is now accepting grant applications from public government agencies for the purchase and deployment of floating restrooms on California waterways. Interested applicants should review the grant guidelines and submit a grant application to DBW by 5 p.m. (PST) Friday, Dec. 11, 2020.

The Floating Restroom Grant Program helps reduce pollution from recreational boater sewage by providing floating public restrooms in areas with limited landside access.

“Over the years, DBW floating restrooms have become known as S.S. Relief stations,” said DBW Acting Deputy Director Ramona Fernandez. “California State Parks engineering group re-designed the restrooms in 2019 to be ADA compliant. The floating restrooms are solar-powered and the holding tanks capture about 500 gallons of sewage. That’s over one million gallons of sewage kept out of our waterways each year.”

A total of $1.17 million in federal and state funding is available this year for the purchase and deployment of approximately eight DBW-designed and developed ADA compliant floating restrooms. Grants are also available to offset the ongoing operation and maintenance costs of these units through a Sewage Management Equipment Operations and Maintenance grant.

To be eligible for funding, grant applicants must operate a California lake or reservoir that is open to the public. General information on the grant requirements and the online application can be found on DBW’s floating restroom grant webpage located at: dbw.parks.ca.gov/FloatingRestroomGrants.

The competitive grant applications will be scored and ranked according to need, as well as the ability to operate and maintain the floating restrooms for at least 10 years. DBW expects to announce grant recipients in spring 2021.

The Floating Restroom Grant Program is available through the Clean Vessel Act, which is funded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program and the Harbors and Watercraft Revolving Fund. More than 260 floating restrooms have been placed on California lakes and reservoirs through this grant program since 1972. About 119 restrooms are currently deployed.

Floating Restroom Lake Berryessa

Floating restroom shown above during December 2019 deployment at Lake Berryessa. The floating restrooms available for the 2020/21 grant cycle were designed by California State Parks engineering group. Each ADA compliant unit holds about 500 gallons of sewage and can be towed to the shore for scheduled pumpouts or pumped out onsite by pumpout boats. Photo from California State Parks.



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