Green Stormwater Mini-Grant Online Application Hub
What You Need to Apply
1. Make sure you meet the minimum standards. To qualify for a grant, your project has to meet our minimum standards (listed below). If you have questions about the size of your project, reach out to the PCD staff member who visited your property. Rain garden projects must first complete the soil infiltration test.
2. Create your project design. Make a simplified site plan showing the general location of your project, its dimensions, and the dimensions of your property. Project scopes may be hand drawn and do not need to be to scale. Here are some past examples.
3. Estimate your budget. Either fill out our budget estimate worksheet or get a quote from a local contractor. PCD staff will review and approve your budget worksheet or let you know if there are mistakes to correct.
4. Take a few before photos. We want to see the transformation! Include 1 - 4 photos of where your project will go and upload them with your application.
5. Fill our our online application. before grants are due on Friday, November 17th. Submit your budget estimate, project scope, before photos, and any other documents you want to include along with your application.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- What Projects Qualify?
- Who's Eligible?
- How Does the Cost Share Work?
- How Will Projects Be Scored?
- What Happens After I Apply?
Mini-grants are available to support four different project types: Depave, rain gardens, rain tanks, and urban habitat. Applicants can submit a grant for just one project type or multiple. Combining project types can help increase the stormwater impact of your project. Keep in mind that the $4,000 maximum award is per property, not per project. Each project type also must meet our minimum standards to qualify for funding:
|Project Type||Description||Minimum Standard|
|Depave||Removing unwanted and/or excessive pavement to replace it with natural landscaping. Projects to replace driveways and other surfaces with permeable pavement are not eligible.||At least 300 square feet of pavement must be removed and replaced with natural landscaping (trees, rain garden, urban habitat, etc.)|
|Rain Garden||Replacing turf grass or non-native landscaping with a rain garden that intentionally captures and filters stormwater runoff. ||At least half of a building's runoff is directed into the rain garden. Rain gardens that collect runoff from driveways and roads will be evaluated by staff.|
|Rain Tank||Harvesting rain water in a large (>200 gallon) cistern for later use and to slow/disperse rain water.||At least half of a building's runoff is directed into the rain tank. |
|Urban Habitat||Replacing turf grass or non-native landscaping with primarily native plants that benefit pollinators, birds, and other urban wildlife. ||At least 500 square feet of impervious turf grass (or other non-native landscaping) is removed and replaced with natural landscaping (75% of the species must be native).|
Mini-grants will not be awarded for a project if that project is already on a property. For example if the property already has a cistern on it, the property owner may not apply for a mini-grant to purchase an additional rain tank, but they may apply for a mini-grant to fund a rain garden. Refer to PCD’s Financial Assistance Program Policy for additional requirements and limitations.
Individuals, businesses, and organizations are eligible for a Green Stormwater Mini-Grant to support an approved project within one of our three priority watershed. The maximum grant award for any one property is $4,000. You do not need to own the property where the project will be, but the property owner must provide written permission for the project and commit to a long-term maintenance plan for the project.
Green Stormwater Mini-grants are available for projects within one of three priority watersheds: the Chambers Creek, Commencement Bay, and Lower Puyallup River (see map below). These watersheds were identified as the most in-need of green stormwater infrastructure in Pierce County due to their high percentage of impervious surfaces.
Projects outside of these watersheds are discouraged from applying, but an occasional project outside these watersheds may receive grant funding. These projects will be reviewed and approved by staff on a case-by-case basis.
Green Stormwater Mini-Grants require a cost-share of at least 25%. That means PCD will cover 75% of the total cost of the project (materials, labor, plants, etc.) up to a maximum award from PCD of $4,000.
For example, if a project costs a total of $5,000, PCD would provide a grant for $3,750 (75% of the project cost). If a project costs a total of $6,000, PCD would provide a grant for $4,000 because 75% of the project cost ($4,500) is above PCD's maximum award limit. You will be responsible for covering the rest of the project costs, either out of pocket or with another grant.
To get a rough idea of how much your project will cost, use these cost estimates for the project(s) you're interested in:
(within Tacoma city limits)
|$12 per square foot of pavement removed|
(outside Tacoma city limits)
|$24 per square foot of pavement removed.|
|Rain Garden||$30 per square foot of rain garden. |
Assume rain garden should be 15% the size of the contributing area.
|Rain Tank||$10 per gallon of storage. |
Assume 1 gallon of storage for every 2 feet of roof contributing to the tank.
|Urban Habitat||$5 per square foot|
Projects can be funded in one of two ways:
- Reimbursement. If you would like to hire your own contractor and purchase your own materials, you are free to do so! Just keep your receipts and submit them after the project is complete. PCD will then send you a check in the mail.
- Direct Pay. If you don't want to pay for things up front, no problem! PCD can hire contractors and purchase materials for your project up front. After the project is complete, PCD will send you an invoice for your portion of the project.
Each Green Stormwater Mini-Grant application will be assessed on five different facets of the proposal, each weighted differently to contribute to a total score for the project. Those facets are:
Equity (30%). As PCD works to be more inclusive, diverse, and equitable organization, we strive to address historical inequities by intentionally directing our time and resources to support projects that are in, led by, and/or serve historically marginalized communities and neighborhoods, particularly those in areas with low or very low equity indices (according to the Pierce County Equity Index).
Amplification (20%). Educational, demonstration, and community projects are great ways to amplify the importance of green stormwater infrastructure, addressing both a tangible water quality issue while educating and engaging others. Projects involving neighbors, schools, or community volunteers, are encouraged.
Stormwater Impact (20%). All project types have a minimum size they have to be, but some far exceed these standards. The larger the project, the greater the overall impact on reducing polluted stormwater runoff.
Relative Impact (20%). While the size of a project is important, we also want to support projects that maximize the green stormwater potential of a property. Projects that may be smaller due to the size of a property can still have a big impact if they collect runoff from 100% of the property’s roof or remove all of the turf grass in the yard.
Confidence (10%). PCD wants to be confident that the projects we fund are technically feasible, reduce stormwater runoff, and will be well cared for by willing and capable cooperators. Staff will discuss this with you more during your site visit.
Applications are due on Friday, November 17th, 2023 at 5:00 PM (Pacific Time).
All applications submitted before the deadline will be reviewed, assessed, and scored by a Mini-Grant Review Committee, composed of PCD staff, local green storwmater experts, and members of the community. After the committee reaches a consensus, successful applicants will be sent a Notice of Award.
Upon receiving a grant, the majority of projects will follow this timeline:
- January/February: Notice of Awards are sent to grant recipients. Additional paperwork is completed.
- March/April: Grant recipients meet with PCD and/or contractors to take your initial project scope and develop a full, shovel-ready plan.
- May/June: Rain tank projects are typically installed and completed. For non-rain tank projects, site prep work, such as pavement removal, earth moving, and mulch spreading begins.
- July/August: Pre-planting work is complete, and plants are ordered.
- September/October: Projects are planted.
- November/December: PCD inspects all projects and discusses long-term care plans with grant recipients. Final paperwork for cost share agreements is complete.
- Permitting. With the exception of Depave projects within Tacoma city limits, if permits are required for the project, the grantee is responsible for obtaining and/or purchasing them before beginning project work. A copy of the permit will be required before reimbursement. Permits for Depave projects in Tacoma will be obtained and paid for via an agreement between the City and PCD.
- Agreements. Participants of this program will be required to sign (1) a Cooperator Agreement with PCD, (2) a Financial Assistance Contract (upon grant award) that demonstrates a commitment to maintain the project for its life, (3) a Reimbursement Form upon completion of the project (if applicable).
- Grant Timeframe. Projects must be completed, and all receipts submitted to PCD within the timeframe designated in the “Notice of Award” acceptance letter. Any work completed prior to the “Notice of Award” will not be reimbursable. If a grant is awarded and no evidence of progress has been made within a 3 month period, PCD reserves the right to withdraw the grant.
- Use of Grant Funds. Grant funds are for implementation only (not intended for private design costs). Machinery rental may be reimbursed if it is necessary for implementing the Green Stormwater project. Direct contractor costs for implementation must be included in total project cost for reimbursement.
- Maintenance. Property owners are expected to maintain the project for at least the “lifespan” of the practice, which is typically a minimum of 10 years. If the property is sold in this time, the property owner must notify PCD of the change in ownership and if the new landowner will continue maintaining the project. @(Model.BulletStyle == CivicPlus.Entities.Modules.Layout.Enums.BulletStyle.Decimal ? "ol" : "ul")>