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Administered Funding

A rocky stream with two people taking water samples.A lake with a boat for collecting watersamples.A man with wading pants writes on a clipboard while standing in a shallow stream.

Partner and Project Support 

The Watershed Planning Program provides support to organizations that implement clean water projects using tactical basin plans in order to prioritize and coordinate efforts, maximizing the efficiency of restoration and protection efforts. Watershed planners provide support to partner organizations to coordinate work that leads to the implementation of tactical basin plan strategies. WPP provides technical support to project implementors and provides assistance in securing funding for priority projects. The program manages the WISPr and Formula Grant funding programs and supports Enhancement Grants that fund voluntary water quality projects. The integration of planning with partner support and funding serves to maximize the impact of water quality restoration efforts throughout the 15 basins of the state. 


The Water Infrastructure Sponsorship Program (WISPr) is designed to address a limited and under-assisted category of water resource needs in Vermont known as natural resource projects (NRP). The goal of WISPr is to counter the loss of ecological function and biological diversity that jeopardize the health of Vermont’s water resources by providing financial resources.

Municipalities holding CWSRF loans for pollution control and abatement facilities use up to 10% of the cost of the CWSRF loan principle to sponsor natural resource projects. Sponsoring municipalities will receive a reduction in administrative rate which will lead to a lifetime savings on the loan equal to the cost of the sponsored natural resource project. As an incentive for sponsorship, the administrative loan rate is reduced another 0.1% to provide additional savings over the lifetime of the loan that would not be present without sponsorship of a WISPr natural resource projects.  

Formula Grants 

WPP administers the Act 76 Formula Grants to Clean Water Service Providers (CWSPs). CWSPs were established under Act 76 in 2019. Each major river basin in Lake Champlain has an assigned CWSP, as does the Lake Memphremagog basin. CWSPs are given projects funds from which they are to fund clean water projects in their basin, in collaboration with their Basin Water Quality Council (BWQC).

More on CWSPs, BWQCs and Formula grants and Act 76 can be found at the link above.

Enhancement Grants 

WPP assisted in the management of Clean Water Fund Enhancement Grants which fund clean water projects in basins of the Connecticut River and Hudson River watersheds.

Tactical Basin Planning Support Grants 

Tactical Basin Planning Support Grants provide funding for 13 watershed organizations through Watersheds United Vermont, 13 Natural Resources Conservation Districts through the Natural Resources Conservation Council and 11 Regional Planning Commissions to support partners to: 

  • Participate in regional coordination meetings and sector base workgroups which support shared learning and the coordination of regional partners on water quality implementation efforts. 

  • Lead outreach and technical assistance to implement tactical basin plan strategies. 

  • Participate in Water Quality monitoring programs 

  • Provide municipal support to update municipal plan and bylaws to strengthen flood resilience and water quality protections. 

  • Engage in the Tactical basin planning process through the facilitate or participation in sector specific water quality discussions or gathering stakeholder input. 

  • Participate on Basin Water Quality Councils charged with prioritizing projects for over 8 million dollars in and annual formula grant funding. 

More information on the accomplishments of the tactical basin planning support grants can be found in the annual summary reports for Watershed Groups, Natural Resource Conservation Districts, and Regional Planning Commissions. Training materials for tactical basin planning grant participants is found on the Engagement and Resources page. 

Watershed Project Database 

Clean water projects are tracked in the watershed project database which lists nearly 7000 proposed projects, 250 projects that are funded and are being implemented and over 1,100 projects that have been completed. Projects include planting trees on stream banks, restoring lakeshore habitat, installing stormwater treatment practices, or addressing runoff from agricultural lands. Project proponents can request projects be added to the database using the New Project Nform, which watershed planners review and approve.  The database can be viewed in a mapping platform with the watershed project explorer.