Wildlife & Sport Fish Restoration Program
Pacific Region


Briefings - Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) Program

Purpose:  This program provides funds for States to construct, renovate, and/or maintain tie-up facilities and associated amenities for transient, recreational vessels 26 feet or more in length; production and distribution of information and educational materials that may be useful to these boaters is also an eligible activity.

Eligible Participants:  Any State or Territorial agency designated by the Governor to participate on behalf of the State may apply for these grants. However, states may issue sub-grants and contracts to other public or private entities; these groups then become third-party cooperators in completion of a project.

Funding:  The BIG Program has two funding tiers:
Tier One is intended to ensure a broad geographic distribution of funds, by providing each State or Territory submitting an eligible proposal up to $100,000 per fiscal year. All Tier One projects must meet established eligibility requirements (see 50 CFR 86).  States may submit multiple projects within a Tier One proposal; however, the total funding requested may not exceed $100,000.

Tier Two proposals are awarded through a competitive process, based on individual project merits. There is no dollar limit on amounts associated with any Tier Two project proposal, however, awards normally appear in the range of $300,000 to $1.5 million.  All Tier Two projects must satisfy BIG eligibility requirements (see 50 CFR 86.14 & 86.20). The Service will score and rank each Tier Two project separately according to established ranking criteria in 50 CFR 86.60 (e.g., transient applicability, partnership involvement, innovativeness, other funding contributions, cost efficiency, links with other destinations, access opportunities, economic impacts, and multi-state efforts).

Matching Requirements:  The BIG program is a cost-reimbursable program, i.e., the grantees cover the full amount of an approved activity and then apply for reimbursement through the Federal Assistance Program for up to 75 percent of the project expenses.  Grantees must provide at least 25 percent of project funding from a non-federal source. 

Project Application/Selection Process:  Grantees submit project proposals to the Regional Office for review by the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program staff for eligibility and for determination of substantiality in character and design.  Compliance with other applicable Federal regulations (i.e., endangered species issues, environmental issues, etc.) will be addressed as determined applicable.  Grantees are not in competition with each other for funding under Tier One and if approved, Tier One projects may be funded immediately and the States may be reimbursed for the Federal share as they incur costs (up to $100,00).

Grantees are in competition (with each other) for funding under Tier Two, thus the Service is involved in ranking and selecting projects which may take several months.  Grantees have full authority in the determination of their needs and priorities, and they submit proposals accordingly to the FWS Region where regional staff first determines eligibility and substantiality; proposals are subsequently scored and submitted for further evaluation by a national ranking panel.  After the final selection of the proposals has been made and approved by the Service Director, regional staff works with successful applicants to finalize the application and to ensure compliance with applicable federal regulations.

Once completed, projects are monitored to ensure that the work has been completed as proposed and that the funds have been spent on approved activities.

WSFRP Contact

Paul Hayduk (paul_hayduk@fws.gov) 503-736-4780

Flinn Curren, Pacific Islands Coordinator (edward_curren@fws.gov) 808-792-9572



Last updated: December 20, 2012
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