Applications Now Open for Funding to Help Working Waterfront Properties Rebuild from Winter Storms

Maine's working waterfronts are the lifeblood of our coastal communities, and, you know, they were hit incredibly hard by last winter's devastating storms. So to help our communities rebuild, I proposed and the legislature has approved $60 million in storm relief.

Well, this week I was proud to announce that applications for some of that funding are now available.

Hello, this is Governor Janet Mills, and thank you for listening.

Through these Working Waterfront Resilience Grants, which are part of the Maine Infrastructure Adaptation Fund over at the Maine DOT, my administration will dedicate funds to projects that are rebuilding wharves and piers and that provide a significant and compelling community benefit to our commercial fishing and aquaculture industries.

We will measure that community benefit by how many fishermen use that property, as well as the number of people who work there. To make sure that we can support as many commercial fishing and aquaculture operations as possible, we will start by issuing grants of up to $2 million each to infrastructure projects that support 20 or more commercial fishermen and/or aquaculturists. If funding remains available after that, we'll look at the projects that support ten or more commercial fishermen and aquaculturists.

These grants can be used to reconstruct or improve damaged wharves and piers and buildings such as bait sheds, as well as electrical and fuel systems that support the commercial fishing industry. Applicants will be expected to match the grant funds they request and to show that the repairs they make on their properties will make them more resilient to future weather events.

You can apply for these grants at That's Applications are open from now until Monday, June 10th, 2024 at 4:30 p.m. Funds should be available sometime in August.

Two additional grant opportunities are also in the offing. Next week, the Department of Economic and Community Development will make applications available for $10 million of the same funding source through the Maine Business Resilience and Recovery Fund. Those grants will help businesses and organizations, including nonprofits that were affected by the storms.

Meanwhile, the Department of Transportation will also make grant applications available for the remaining funds in the Infrastructure Adaptation Fund to improve infrastructure such as culverts and drinking water systems and stormwater systems to reduce our climate impacts, especially flooding.

I hope this new funding, as approved by the Legislature, can provide some sense of certainty as we rebuild stronger and better to preserve our working waterfronts and other critical infrastructure across the state for years to come in the face of worsening weather.

I will continue to do everything I can to help rebuild damaged wharves and piers that commercial fishermen, our coastal communities and our entire state depend on for livelihoods and for our economy.

This is Governor Janet Mills, and thank you for listening.