S.C. to receive $4,760,835 in boating infrastructure grants from Department of Interior

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WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of the Interior announced South Carolina will receive a Boating Infrastructure Grant of $2,314,657 to improve boating infrastructure and provide opportunities for outdoor recreation.

State partners will provide $2,446,178 in additional non-federal matching funds, bringing the total project cost to $4,760,835.

The Marine Resources Division of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources proposes to work with City Marina Co. to construct two new dock "trees" which would provide a total of 32 dedicated 60-foot slips and two 130-feet-long side-tie "T" heads, restrooms, laundry and lounge space. The facility will provide dockside utilities for transient recreational boaters, including Wi-Fi, electricity, water and pump-out services.

The Marine Resources Division of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources also proposes to work with Leucadia Coast Properties LLC to construct a small marina facility adjacent to Joseph P. Riley Jr. Waterfront Park in downtown Charleston.

The ADA-accessible marina facility will provide a total of approximately 500 feet of side-tie dockage on floating docks of which 320 feet of side-tie dockage will be dedicated to use by recreational transient vessels 26 feet and longer.

It will also provide a 20-by-60-feet covered area for boaters to shelter out of the weather/sun, congregate, socialize, etc.

The Marine Resources Division of South Carolina Department of Natural Resources proposes to assist SCM Partners LLC to expand the existing marina and install additional state-of-the-art floating docks and utilities to create new dockage for up to 51 transient recreational vessels.

This announcement is part of $14 million in BIG funds being awarded nationwide.

Nearly $10 million will be awarded competitively for 10 projects in seven states under the BIG Tier II subprogram. The service will also release $4 million to fund 33 projects in 23 states, commonwealths and territories under the BIG Tier I subprogram.

States and their partners will provide more than $16 million in non-federal matching funds toward these projects. These grants are awarded on an annual basis.

"Outdoor recreation is a key part of our American heritage, and boating in particular is how many Americans enjoy our public waters," said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke. "The BIG grants help ensure that anglers and boaters experience improved access to fishing opportunities and safer, more user-friendly recreational boating facilities."

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service BIG program provides funding through excise and other taxes on certain fishing and boating equipment and gasoline to support dedicated boat tie-up facilities and associated amenities to help Americans enjoy the nation's waters.

Funding for the BIG program comes from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund. Since its inception in 2000, the BIG program has awarded $194 million to projects for large transient recreational boats, including the construction of more than 5,000 berths for boaters across most states and U.S. territories.