Startup Grants are intended for beginning the process of building community-wide support for expanding broadband service. Funded projects are intended to prepare communities for planning for the expansion of broadband service, which should result in the following: a description of local broadband needs and goals; inventory the existing infrastructure assets; a gap analysis defining the additional broadband infrastructure necessary to meet identified needs and goals; an assessment of relevant municipal procedures, policies, rules and ordinances; and a strategy to promote digital inclusion that addresses affordable internet service and equipment, digital literacy and public computer access. Read more at the ConnectME website: https://www.maine.gov/connectme/grants/planning-grants
Has your community been planning for broadband “for a while now”? Check out this recent blog post by ConnectMaine Executive Director for how to get unstuck: https://www.mainebroadbandcoalition.org/post/decision-time-choosing-the-right-broadband-solution-for-your-community
The Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is announcing $4 million dollars in available grant funding to be awarded in a single round through a 2021 Request for Applications (RFA). These bond funds support the DEP's competitive grant program that matches local funding to assist municipalities with culvert upgrades and replacements at stream crossings; maximum grant funding is $125,000 per project and only 2 proposals may be awarded per municipality. Projects are scored on the degree to which they improve fish and wildlife habitat (including reconnecting streams in priority habitats and incorporating Stream Smart design elements), increase public safety and reduce flooding; and represent a cost-effective investment.
The grant RFA is expected to be available starting August 30, 2021, with proposals due by November 19, 2021. Although the application is not yet available, there are numerous design resources, videos, detailed scoring guidance, and application materials from previous rounds available on our website that can help municipalities begin data collection before the round opens: https://www.maine.gov/dep/land/grants/stream-crossing-upgrade.html
To help municipalities and others involved with these projects better understand the grant program and requirements Maine DEP (in partnership with Maine Audubon, MaineDOT, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Maine Land Use Planning Commission) has produced four online guidance videos to help potential applicants understand the grant program and provide basic information regarding stream crossing regulations, installation, and design. This workshop is highly recommended for anyone applying for a grant and is also available on the DEP's Stream Crossing Grants Program web page.
The following programs are available to Maine Communities and in certain instances, Counties through the Office of Community Development. For specific information on applications dates and program eligible activities, refer to the individual application packages and the current Program Statement.
|Programs||Letter of Intent Due Date
|Application Due Date
By Invitation Only
|Downtown Revitalization||January 29, 2021||March 26, 2021|
|Economic Development||March 5, 2021||May 21, 2021|
|Housing Assistance||March 5, 2021||May 7, 2021|
|Public Services||March 26, 2021||May 7, 2021|
|Community Enterprise||January 29, 2021||April 9, 2021|
|Special Projects/Urgent Need||N/A||TBD|
Full program descriptions and application materials are available on the Maine DECD website.
Approximately $4.6 MM for each state, up to a $1,000,000 maximum award to eligible infrastructure projects, up to a $350,000 maximum award for all other types of eligible projects. All funds are in the form of reimbursement for eligible expenses incurred after a Notice to Proceed has been fully executed. Maine's program area includes Androscoggin, Aroostook, Franklin, Hancock, Kennebec, Knox, Oxford, Penobscot, Piscataquis, Somerset, Waldo, and Washington counties.
Visit NBRC's website for full timeline and more information.
Towns under 4,000 residents are eligible for energy efficiency upgrades from Efficiency Maine. Eligible projects include heat pumps and interior lighting upgrades for municipal facilities.
Applications due by March 31, 2021.
The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry's Municipal Planning Assistance Program (MPAP) seeks applications for a new round of Coastal Community Grants for FY 2022. The grants are for municipal and regional projects in Maine’s Coastal Zone. Funding for those technical assistance grants comes from Maine Coastal Program’s annual grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Proposals are due Thursday, April 15, 2021.
The Three Categories, focus on building community resiliency and adapting to climate change, as addressed in Maine's Climate Action Plan:
View the grant program statement and more information on MPAP's website.
The Maine Coastal Program is currently seeking applications for a new round of coastal grants for FY2022. Shore and Harbor Planning Grants support municipal and regional projects in Maine’s Coastal Zone. Proposals are due Monday, May 3rd, 2021, 5pm.
Shore and Harbor Planning Grants promote: sound waterfront planning and harbor management, balanced development of shore and harbor areas, planning for waterfront infrastructure improvements, planning for climate resiliency and access to the shore. Funds may be used for development of plans for waterfront facilities and amenities, harbor and mooring plans, waterfront vulnerability assessments and resiliency plans, development of regulatory and non-regulatory approaches to waterfront conservation and improvement, development of planning studies for public and working access, development of plans and designs for harbor improvements, and development of management plans for municipal waterfront facilities.
Note: For this grant round, distribution of awards will place emphasis on coastal waterfront climate resilience with a focus on projects that advance the recommendations identified in Maine Won’t Wait: A Four-Year Plan for Climate Action. https://www.maine.gov/future/sites/maine.gov.future/files/inline-files/MaineWontWait_December2020.pdf
Released in December 2020, the Plan identifies the need for communities to be proactive about understanding, planning and acting to reduce their risk from climate change.
Potential Funding Activities: Examples of projects below re not meant to be an exhaustive list, but rather provide ideas for projects that would be eligible for funding.
The Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has release of its Request for Applications (RFA) - Grants for Nonpoint Source Pollution Control Projects Watershed-based Plan Development. DEP is inviting applications for projects to help communities develop nine-element watershed-based plans to restore impaired water bodies or protect threatened waters that are named on DEP's Nonpoint Priority Watersheds List. DEP anticipates that $75,000 of Section 604(b) and 319 Federal Clean Water Act funds will be available. DEP expects to award 2 to 4 NPS grants with individual awards ranging from approximately $10,000 to $50,000.
The RFA, current application, Question & Answer Summary and all amendments related to this RFA, can be obtained on the Maine DEP website.
Applications must be submitted to the State of Maine Division of Procurement Services, via e-mail, to the following email address: . Application submissions for 2021 must be submitted no later than 11:59 pm, local time, on April 28, 2021.
Applications will be opened at the Burton M. Cross Office Building, 111 Sewall Street - 4th Floor, Augusta, Maine the following business day. Applications not submitted to the Division of Procurement Services’ aforementioned email address by the aforementioned deadline will not be considered for contract award.
USDA Reopens Program Sign-Up to a Larger Share of Producers with Plans to Expand Outreach and New Programming
USDA will reopen sign-up for CFAP 2 for at least 60 days beginning on April 5, 2021. The USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) has committed at least $2.5 million to improve outreach for CFAP 2 and will establish partnerships with organizations with strong connections to socially disadvantaged communities to ensure they are informed and aware of the application process.
Please stay tuned for additional information and announcements under the USDA Pandemic Assistance to Producers initiative, which will help to expand and more equitably distribute financial assistance to producers and farming operations during the COVID-19 national emergency. Please visit www.farmers.gov for more information on the details of today’s announcement.