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ODNR Offers $500,000 in Local Boating Safety Education Grants

COLUMBUS, Ohio – School districts, universities, non-profits, and other eligible organizations are invited to apply for $500,000 in boating safety education grants distributed by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

“We want to make sure everyone in Ohio has a fun and safe boating experience,” said ODNR Director Mary Mertz. “These grants will help people learn the ways of the water, provide safe equipment, and ensure boaters have everything they need to make cherished memories on our lakes, rivers, and streams.”

Grants range from $1,000 to $30,000 with grantee cost share or in-kind contribution of 25%. Funding supports the local purchase of safety equipment like kayaks, life jackets, and trailers.

Interested organizations are invited to attend a free grant workshop on Nov. 3 in Columbus. The class will cover the application process and types of projects that are eligible for funding. To learn more about the upcoming workshop, the boating safety education grants, and to apply click here.

The grants are funded by Ohio’s recreational boaters through the Waterways Safety Fund, which is comprised of a share of the state motor fuel tax, watercraft registration and titling fees, and funding from the U.S. Coast Guard.

Last year, nearly $330,000 was awarded to 15 grantees including outdoor non-profit organizations, colleges, park districts, and local school districts.

The ODNR Division of Parks and Watercraft is mandated by state law to provide boating safety education programs. The division accomplishes this mission by providing annual funding assistance to local communities and nonprofit organizations through a competitive grant program.

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