FWS Calls for Coastal Wetland and Habitat Grant Applications The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) announces the availability of grants for FY2009 for the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program. Funds awarded through National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program are used to acquire, restore, and enhance coastal wetlands and habitat. Grants are awarded to coastal states and territories through competitive matching grants to state agencies. The maximum Federal cost share for this Program is 75 percent of total project costs in states that have a fund established and used for acquiring coastal wetlands, other natural areas, or open spaces. States that do not have a fund are limited to a maximum 50 percent Federal cost share. The following insular areas: American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands are not required to provide a match, in which case the Federal Government may provide all of the project costs. In FY 2008, the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program awarded more than $20 million to 11 states and 1 territory to fund 29 individual projects encompassing nearly 10,000 acres of coastal wetlands. The Fish and Wildlife Service expects that approximately $19 million will be available for grants from the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program in FY 2009. Awards typically range from $200,000 (there is no specific minimum) to a maximum of $1,000,000. Winners will be announced in December 2008 or January 2009. Applications for the grant program are due on June 27, 2008. For more information: http://ecos.fws.gov/docs/coastal_grants/web/pdf/2009RequestforApplicatio ns.pdf.