An aerial view of Lake Oroville Marina showing Lake Oroville at an elevation of 894 feet, or 97 percent of total capacity.

Image Credit: Joel Vandekrol

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California: $8.6 Million in Grant Funding for Improving Boating Access


The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has announced the availability of up to $8.6 million in funding for projects to improve public access for recreational boaters statewide. CDFW’s Boating Access Grant Program will reimburse the costs of projects that seek to acquire, develop, renovate, maintain, or improve facilities that create or enhance public access to California waters or advance the suitability of waters for recreational boating.

CDFW is accepting proposals through Nov. 3, 2023, for the 2023-2024 Boating Access Grant Program. CDFW will also hold a Public Solicitation Workshop Oct. 4 at 10:30 a.m. to provide an overview of the program including eligible activities, program requirements, and the grant process.

“California’s waterways, from our coastline to majestic lakes and a vast network of rivers, provide unparalleled recreational opportunities for every boater,” said Charlton H. Bonham, CDFW director. “Ensuring safe and reliable access for our anglers and every boater statewide remains a high priority.”

Supported with federal funds through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Sport Fish Restoration Grant Program, funding for the program comes from revenue via taxes on sportfishing equipment, fishing tackle, pleasure boats, and the portion of the gasoline fuel tax attributable to small engines and motorboats. The Boating Access Program provides funding for a broad range of access facilities and associated amenities that benefit recreational boaters. To find out more about eligible activities, click here.

Project activities eligible for Boating Access grant funds include:

  • Planning, permitting, design, and construction of boating access facilities
  • Amenities for boaters, including compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act at boating access facilities:
    • Launching and landing facilities for paddle craft and non-motorized boats
    • Outreach to boaters about available boating access and amenities
    • Aquatic invasive species information and education (inspection but not enforcement)
    • Vegetation management related to boater access
    • Pump-out facilities for vessels with on-board sanitary holding tanks
    • Fueling docks for boaters
    • Potable water supplies for boaters
    • Dinghy docks
  • Operation and maintenance of boating access facilities
  • Administration and coordination of boating access programs (including personnel, travel, training, and planning)
  • Maintenance and operations projects for boating access sites, facilities, and structures

For questions on CDFW’s Boating Access Grant Program, please email boatingaccess@wildlife.ca.gov.