The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is providing $10.5 million in Waterway Improvement Fund grants to improve public boating access and navigation throughout the state.
Passed by the Maryland General Assembly and signed by Governor Larry Hogan, this critical funding will go toward 49 projects in 18 counties from Allegany to Worcester.
“Through this grant program, we are improving the quality of life of our citizens and visitors through the development and enhancement of various water access sites throughout the state, while expanding opportunities for the public to appreciate all that the Chesapeake Bay, coastal bays and their tributaries have to offer,” Governor Larry Hogan said.
“The boating industry supports thousands of jobs in Maryland and contributes billions to our economy.”
Funded projects include the dredging of local navigation channels, maintaining public boating access facilities, improving parking and upgrading existing infrastructure such as bulkheads, piers and ramps.
Funding is also provided to local first responders to enhance water rescue operations.
“From cruising the Chesapeake Bay to maneuvering the open waters of the Atlantic Ocean, boating is a way of life in Maryland,” Natural Resources Secretary Mark Belton said.
“The Waterway Improvement Fund is a vital state resource that ensures that residents and visitors alike will continue to benefit from Maryland’s world-class recreational boating opportunities for years to come.”
The Waterway Improvement Fund was created in 1966 to support the development, enjoyment and use of Maryland’s waters for the benefit of the general boating public. It is primarily derived from a five-percent vessel excise tax on boat purchases and titling.