Sustainable Financing

Most state wetland programs are funded through a combination of state and federal sources. Securing sustained funding is always challenging, particularly during times when states are cutting budgets in response to reduced tax revenue. State wetland program managers do work actively to find funding sources. For example, every year one or more states try to increase permit fees to cover increasing program costs. But formal actions to secure additional funding may or may not be successful.

State and Tribal wetland programs have to pay for personnel, lab monitoring supplies, travel, contractual work, data management, mapping, website maintenance, outreach & education, training, permitting (e.g. site visits, applications), vehicles for field work, overhead expenses, grant administration, and other costs. Because a state has limited funds for its environmental programs, the state’s (or tribal) wetland programs often seek to identify additional sources of funding. To do this, sometimes a state wetland program may partner with another agency on a grant, where each agency gets part of the funding. EPA’s State Wetland Development Grant program has been an important source of support for many state wetland programs. But one of the challenges is that State Wetland Development Grants cannot be used for implementation; funds can only be used for program development, e.g. writing regulations but not issuing permits. Thus, most state wetland programs have funding that comes from multiple sources.