Water Resources Program Funding Opportunities:
2015 Drought Emergency Grant Program
Last revised: December 2, 2015
The following is an archive of the 2015 Drought Emergency Grant Program. This page will not be updated.
The 2015 Drought Relief Grant Program is now closed. Ecology is no
longer accepting applications for drought grants.
State puts funds to work relieving drought hardships
The Washington State Legislature allocated $16M for the 2015-17 biennium to
reduce or eliminate hardships from the Drought Emergency. A portion of this
funding was used to fund grants to eligible public entities for projects that
would address hardships from the 2015 Statewide Drought Emergency to:
- Public drinking water supplies;
- Livestock and irrigated agriculture;
- or Fish and wildlife.
To be eligible for funding, at minimum:
- Only public entities were eligible to apply,
such as cities, towns, counties, special purpose districts, or
- The proposal had to be implemented in a timely
manner to effectively alleviate drought hardship during
the existing declaration.
- The associated water use had to be an existing use
under a legal water right, and not a new or expanded use of
- The applicants were required to provide a 50 percent
funding match, except for those public water suppliers
that meet the fiscally disadvantaged standard in
Chapter 173-167-040(2) WAC.
Note: Eligibility did not ensure approval of funding.
How were funding decisions made?
This was a competitive grant process. Highest priority was given where the
greatest need was demonstrated. Projects given funding preference included
where the benefits were most cost effective; when the applicant had already
planned for drought and was implementing conservation or other drought
mitigation measures; and when a project had multi-faceted or long-term benefits.
For additional information, you should read the terms laid out in the
Drought Funding rule.
For More Information
In the News
provides almost $5.6 million in drought relief funding for
2015 - The 2015 Legislature approved $16 million in
drought relief funding for use in 2015 and 2016. As of December. 1, 2015,
Ecology has spent or committed almost $5.6 million of the total.
Drought relief funds benefit water haulers,
orchards Grants help pay for Skagit water
filling stations, Yakima basin irrigation well
- Ecology News Release November 13, 2015
Grants ease drought hardships on Olympic -
Peninsula; Port Angeles utility to benefit;
reclaimed water boosts Sequim creek
flows - Ecology News Release October 26, 2015
Grants fund drought projects from Spokane to
Startup - Wenatchee and Kennewick irrigation
districts, water haulers to benefit - Ecology
News Release September 16, 2015
Grants help upgrade water wells, boost
irrigation water for crops - Moxee’s water
system, irrigation districts in Wenatchee and
Cashmere to receive drought relief funding,
Ecology News Release August 21, 2015
Emergency funds support three drought-relief projects -
Projects in Eastern, Central and Western Washington help with
water shortages, Ecology News Release August 10, 2015
$16 million to help relieve drought hardships statewide -
Ecology News Release, July 13, 2015
Emergency Drought Rule
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