The Idaho Water Resource Board is seeking applications for grants to be used for flood-damaged stream-channel repair, stream-channel improvement, flood-risk reduction or flood-prevention work in rivers and streams throughout Idaho.

In its 2019 session, the Legislature set aside $800,000 for the program, to be administered by the board. The legislation included an emergency clause for immediate implementation.

Applicants can request funding for up to $200,000 per project. There will be a 50 percent match requirement for all grants awarded, officials said. Applications that include higher cost-share percentages will receive a higher ranking, and new applications from entities that have not been funded previously also will receive extra points, officials said.

The application deadline is June 21. Projects will be reviewed by the board’s Finance Committee, and final grant awards will be selected at a July 26 board meeting.

This is the second year of the Idaho Water Resource Board’s Flood-Management Grant Program. In 2018, the board approved 14 projects totaling about $1 million statewide.

A number of wet water years in a row with deep snowpack have caused flooding damage throughout the state since the record-setting winter of 2017-18. To be considered for grant funding, applicants must provide evidence of flood damage or evidence of conditions that create the risk of flooding in a stream channel, officials said.

The Big Wood River has already overflowed its banks in west Hailey, flooding portions of War Eagle Drive. City Public Works Director Brian Yeager said he was evaluating grant alternatives but did not yet have any projects lined up.

“I’ll be watching the flow this year looking for project alternatives,” he said.

The following entities are eligible to receive grant funding: flood control districts, counties, municipalities, drainage districts, irrigation districts, canal companies and other public entities. To apply for a flood-management grant, go to idwr.idaho.gov/IWRB/programs/financial/ for details.

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