FUND-9 (6/28/05 version)
Current Priority Funding Strategies

Ohio NPS partners increasingly recognize the magnitude of statewide NPS needs against the backdrop of limited financial resources. For a number of years, watersheds and stream segments on the state 303(d) list of impaired waters have been recognized as priorities for action and funding at both the state and national levels. For the first time, the 2005-2010 Nonpoint Source Management Plan has extracted from the 303(d) list, those areas where bacteria, nutrients, silt/sediments, habitat and or hydro-modification are listed as high magnitude causes of impairment for at least one stream (PDF 49kb) or river (PDF 8kb) within the watershed assessment unit.

All streams where NPS is a high magnitude cause of impairment are potentially eligible for one or more of the available Ohio NPS implementation funding sources, shown in Table 1. However, even with this focus on NPS impaired streams on the 303(d) list, the NPS implementation needs exceed the available funding. Specifically, several Ohio NPS funding programs have annual application cycles requiring proposed projects to undergo a competitive review prior to making funds available.

Consequently, Ohio has begun linking approval of local NPS project funding to a hierarchy of priorities, which includes recognizing the importance of successful watershed planning and TMDL reports at step 8 or above (PDF 490kb). In some cases, the result is NPS implementation fund approval targeted to priority watersheds and/or selected aquifers. In other cases, NPS implementation project funding approval is linked more directly to the environmental benefit and/or the appropriate connection to specific recommendations in a state endorsed watershed plan or federally approved TMDL. The targeting approach to funding approval usually results in additional points in the project score during a competitive review process. To receive funding, applicants must also meet all other applicable funding program criteria and their project score must be relatively higher than other applications within a given funding cycle.

Linkage between NPS project implementation, watershed planning and TMDLs is an additional tool that allows Ohio to more effectively focus limited funding on projects that result in the elimination of known NPS causes of impairment, restoration of impaired waters, and improved water quality.

The following funding programs recognize watersheds with completed TMDLs, TMDLs at step 8 or above, and/or endorsed watershed action plans.