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DNREC relaunches Living Shoreline Cost Share Program that helps protect properties in watersheds

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Roman Battaglia / Delaware Public Media
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DNREC is relaunching a program that helps protect properties in watersheds by providing cost assistance for living shoreline projects.

The Living Shoreline Cost Share Program is offering more financial aid to those looking to defray the cost of projects using natural materials to create barriers that limit erosion and flood impacts. DNREC is also offering more staff resources.

The program invites landowners, homeowners’ associations, and community boards who qualify to apply for help paying to install these living shorelines.

"So it's a reimbursement program, and we encourage landowners to reach out to us. Let us know that they're interested in this, and give us some information about their project. They go through the permitting process. They go through the construction process. And then when it's completed they come back to us, and we provide a reimbursement. We do have different tiers of involvement. So we are ready to serve and provide incentives to individual landowners," said Alison Rogerson, environmental scientist at DNREC.

Rogerson notes there’s funding for adjacent landowners and encourages neighbors to get together to cover larger shorelines as well as HOA’s.

Natural materials like native plants and oyster shells are utilized on living shorelines to create these natural buffers.

Rogerson explains how some of the funding works and is applied.

"We have different amounts offered in different watersheds because we're getting funding from different sources, and it depends on if you're a single landowner or multiple landowners or an HOA. We cover about 60% of the cost up to either 13 or 21,000. Again it depends on what your category is," said Rogerson.

The program will also provide a project design review to help meet program criteria and help understanding program criteria and permitting process.

Eligible projects will also receive opportunities from DNREC for learning how to conduct citizen monitoring, and there’s annual maintenance checks by the program for five years after the project is completed.

More information on the programs and how to apply can be found at DNREC’s website.

Joe brings over 20 years of experience in news and radio to Delaware Public Media and the All Things Considered host position. He joined DPM in November 2019 as a reporter and fill-in ATC host after six years as a reporter and anchor at commercial radio stations in New Castle and Sussex Counties.