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The NPS/TMDL section in the Office of Water Quality manages two federal pass-through grant programs aimed at improving water quality in Indiana: Section 319(h) and Section 205(j), each named for the Clean Water Act’s authorizing section. The 205(j) grant program is dedicated to water quality management planning. Funds are used to determine the nature, extent, and causes of point and NPS pollution, and to develop planning documents.
The 319(h) grant program is the primary grant program for supporting both IDEM NPS programs and many locally led watershed-planning efforts. Funds may be used to conduct assessments, develop and implement TMDLs and watershed management plans, provide technical assistance, demonstrate new technology, and provide education and outreach. Nonprofit organizations, universities, and local, state, or federal agencies are eligible for funding. A 40 percent (non-federal) in-kind or cash match of the total grant cost must be provided. Each year, funding proposals are submitted, reviewed by a committee, and selected based on NPS program funding priorities and the quality of the proposal. In addition, emphasis is placed on project partners and documentation of their commitment to the project. Strong partnerships are a key to project success. Matching funds are tracked by IDEM for all projects to ensure compliance with federal requirements. Grant funds are dispersed to grantees upon approval of invoiced expenses. IDEM uses the federal Grants Reporting and Tracking System (GRTS) database to collect data on all activities associated with each 319 grant for reporting to U.S. EPA.
Matching funds and in-kind resources must be directly associated with the project and for work done to fulfill the contract tasks. Federal dollars may not be used to match Section 319 grant funds, since Section 319 funds are also federal dollars.