DNREC Announces Grants to Support Communities With Pollution Restoration Projects

Virtual Public Workshop Scheduled for Nov. 16

Delaware communities adversely affected by environmental pollution can now apply for Community Environmental Project Fund (CEPF) restoration grants for the 2022 grant cycle through the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

The CEPF was created by the Delaware General Assembly in 2004 through legislation that authorized DNREC to establish a grant fund by withholding 25% of funds collected as penalties for violations of environmental regulations. These funds are returned to the communities where violations occurred through competitive grants to nonprofit organizations in support of community environmental projects. Grants are available to affected communities to fund restoration projects that result in:

  • Reduced pollution
  • Enhanced natural resources
  • Enhanced recreational opportunities

Applicants can identify the drainage basin location of their projects with a mapping tool available at dnrec.delaware.gov.

IRS tax-exempt organizations are eligible for CEPF grants of up to $25,000. These groups include civic and community organizations, educational institutions, counties, municipal governments, state agencies and quasi-state agencies. The application deadline is Friday, Dec. 17, 2021. The projects funded in this grant cycle can begin on July 1, 2022 and should be completed by June 30, 2023.

DNREC will hold a virtual public workshop focused on the CEPF program to assist applicants with finalizing their applications at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16. Connection information for the workshop is posted at de.gov/dnrecmeetings, and at de.gov/cepf. Pre-registration is encouraged, but not required for participation.

Recent CEPF projects statewide have included a habitat restoration and scrap tire cleanup, a pollenating rain garden at a school, healthy home and energy assessments, a museum trail project, an energy savings model home for a low income community, a native plantings project to mitigate stormwater runoff, educational signage for a stormwater management site, funding to support plastic pollution education and a floating dock and canoe/kayak project that provides recreational access and helps stabilize canal banks.

The grant application, workshop details and more information about the CEPF are available online at de.gov/cepf.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov; Joanna Wilson, joanna.wilson@delaware.gov

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CARES Act Funds Available for Fishery-Related Businesses

The working waterfront at Bowers Beach in Kent County

 

Application Period Will Be Open from March 22 Through May 5

Saltwater fishery-related businesses that suffered severe revenue declines in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic can apply to the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control for financial relief from March 22 through May 5, 2021. Delaware was awarded $992,013 in federal CARES Act funds to provide financial relief to eligible fishery-related businesses that experienced greater than 35% decline in net revenue during the March 1 through Dec. 31, 2020 COVID-19 impact period, compared to their historic average revenue.

Delaware saltwater fishery-related businesses eligible to apply for CARES Act funds are:

  • Commercial fishing
  • Shellfish aquaculture
  • For-hire recreational fishing (includes charter and head boats)
  • Bait and tackle shops (revenue must come from the sale of saltwater bait and tackle, and 75% of the shop’s revenue most come from those sources)
  • Seafood dealers
  • Seafood processors

Eligible businesses applying to DNREC for CARES Act funding must complete an affidavit through which the applicant will self-certify the business’s revenue decline. An eligible business must demonstrate on the self-certification affidavit that its net revenue during the 2020 COVID-19 impact period decreased by more than 35% compared to the business’s average annual net revenue during 2015 through 2019. For businesses in operation less than five years, but for at least one full year during 2015 through 2019, the net revenue loss during the COVID-19 impact period will be compared to the business’s average annual net revenue for its year(s) of operation.

The maximum amount of CARES Act funding distributed to an individual fishery-related business will depend on the number of applicants and the amount requested by each applicant relative to total available funding, with a minimum award of $100.

The application affidavit and additional CARES Act information are available at https://dnrec.alpha.delaware.gov/fish-wildlife/fishing/cares-act-funding/ or by request from the DNREC Fisheries section within the Division of Fish and Wildlife, at 302-739-9914.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 65,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov; Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov

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Governor Carney: Application Period is Open for Student Representative on State Board of Education

Applications for rising 11th or 12th grade student seat are due March 20, 2020 

DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney announced on Thursday the application period for the student seat on the State Board of Education is open through March 20, 2020. The application can be found on the State Board of Education website.

Governor Carney appointed the first-ever student representative to the state board last year. Dorcas Olatunji, a Charter School of Wilmington student, was appointed to the Board in May 2019. Olatunji’s term expires July 1, 2020.

Click for State Board of Education 2020 Student Board Member Application.

“When we make big decisions that impact schools in our state, it’s important Delaware students have a seat at the table,” said Governor Carney. “I was pleased to appoint Dorcas as our first student representative, and I thank her for her willingness to serve. I encourage rising juniors and seniors to consider applying for this opportunity.”

Olatunji was selected from a competitive and diverse pool of applicants representing all three counties in the state as well as traditional, vocational technical, and charter schools.

“When I was selected as the student representative, I was incredibly excited to take on the role,” said Dorcas Olatunji, Delaware State Board of Education Student Member. “In my time, I’ve learned from education and policy leaders that are truly invested in transforming Delaware education. There’s still some ways to go with student engagement, but I am ready to empower the next student representative to build on the foundation I’ve created.”

One qualified student applicant will be appointed to the Board to serve as a non-voting member. The student must be a Delaware resident and be enrolled in eleventh or twelfth grade at a Delaware public school during the 2020-21 academic year. Applicants who demonstrate a commitment to ensuring quality education for Delaware students will be given priority consideration. 

“The student voice is an important one in helping the Board accomplish our mission of representing the citizens voice in Delaware,” said Whitney Sweeney, President of the State Board of Education. “We have learned from our first student board member and value the insight that a student brings to conversations regarding policies and programs impacting students at all levels across our state.”

The non-voting student seat was approved by the General Assembly in 2018 with the passage of House Bill 455 – legislation sponsored by Representative Stephanie T. Bolden and Senator John Walsh. The Governor annually appoints to the Board an eleventh or twelfth grade student, and a former State Teacher of the Year who also is a current educator. The applications for the non-voting Former Teacher of the Year seat will open later this spring.

The Board’s regular monthly meetings are open to the public and typically scheduled for the third Thursday evening of the month. The Board rotates its meetings to be held in all three counties.


Applications now being accepted for Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police’s 3rd Annual Youth Academies

DOVER – If you are a student aged 12 to 15 with an interest in natural resources and law enforcement, Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police is once again offering summer Youth Academies.

The Youth Academy is a five-day program designed to teach youth about boating safety, hunter safety, and how to protect our natural resources while looking to nurture the relationship between our law enforcement officers and the community. Participants in the Youth Academy attend tuition-free.

This year’s offerings include a Basic Youth Academy and two Advanced Youth Academies:

  • Natural Resources Police Basic Youth Academy (New Castle County)
    Monday through Friday, June 25-29, Ommelanden Hunter Education Training Center, 1205 River Road, New Castle, DE 19720
    Application Deadline: Friday, May 25, 2018
  • Natural Resources Police Advanced Youth Academy (Kent County)
    Tuesday through Saturday, July 10-14, Little Creek Hunter Education Training Center, 3018 Bayside Drive, Dover, DE 19901
    Application Deadline: Friday, May 25, 2018
  • Natural Resources Police Advanced Youth Academy (New Castle County)
    Tuesday through Saturday, July 17-21, Ommelanden Hunter Education Training Center, 1205 River Road, New Castle, DE 19720
    Application Deadline: Friday, May 25, 2018

The Basic Youth Academy is limited to the first 20 qualified applicants, with priority given to those who have not already completed a hunter safety course or boating safety course when the academy begins. Applications must include a 250-word essay on why the applicant wants to take part in the Academy and what Delaware’s natural resources mean to him or her. Students who complete the program will receive both their hunter and boating safety certifications.

The Advanced Youth Academies are for those who wish to continue learning what it is like to be a Natural Resources Police Officer, as well as learning additional outdoor skills. The Advanced Academies are open to youth ages 12 to 15 years old who have either completed the Basic Youth Academy or have already earned their hunter safety and boating safety certifications. An overnight camping excursion is included and parent/guardian participation is mandatory for this portion.

The Advanced Youth Academies are limited to the first 15 qualified applicants, with priority given to those who have already completed the Basic Youth Academy. Applications must include a 500-word essay on either what they learned from the Basic Youth Academy or, if they did not attend, what the applicant learned when they took their hunter and boating safety courses.

Applications are available online at de.gov/fwenforcement, and at DNREC’s licensing desk in the Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901.

Opportunities to support the Youth Academies are available. Without the generous support and donations from our community businesses, private organizations and individuals, the youth academies would not be successful.

For more information regarding the Youth Academy, please call Captain Brian Pollock at 302-365-8703 or email brian.pollock@delaware.gov.

Vol. 48, No. 31

Contact: Sgt. Brooke Africa, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-382-7167 or 302-739-9913, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902


Education Due Process Layperson Panelist Members Sought

Due Process Layperon Panelist Members Sought:
The Governor’s Advisory Council for Exceptional Citizens (GACEC) is currently searching for volunteers to fill the positon of Layperson Panelist. Under IDEA and Delaware Law, there is an administrative hearing process to resolve disputes related to educational matters. The ideal candidate for this volunteer position will have a demonstrated interested in the education of children with disabilities. Training is provided and, if called to serve on a panel, compensation will be given. Please visit our website www.gacec.delaware.gov and click on the link at the bottom of the page to access the application.