The state has around $3 million available to help local governments improve public access to coastal beaches and waters for fiscal 2023-24.
The North Carolina Division of Coastal Management is accepting proposals until 5 p.m. April 28 for the funding through the Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access program, which provides matching funds to local governments in 20 coastal counties to construct low-cost public access facilities.
Access projects may include walkways, dune crossovers, restrooms, parking areas, piers and related projects. The money also may be used for land acquisition or urban waterfront revitalization.
Applicants will be notified by May 14 if their proposal, or preapplication, is selected to submit a final application anticipated to be due in August. All final applicants will be notified this fall if their project has been selected for funding.
Funding for the grant program comes from the North Carolina General Assembly through the state’s Parks and Recreation Trust Fund.
Staff with the state Division of Coastal Management select recipients based on criteria set by the state Coastal Resources Commission. The grant program has provided more than $51 million for more than 481 public waterfront access sites since the program began in 1981.
For more information about the Public Access Grant application process, go to the DEQ website.