Wednesday, July 13, 2016

District Nets $200,000 in Marine Water Quality Awards

Five coastal communities in Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr’s district will be receiving Clean Vessel Act funds for the purchase, operation and maintenance of pumpout equipment including pumpout boats, shoreside pump stations and floating restrooms. The Baker-Polito administration announced the award of the funds which will curtail sewage discharge from recreational vessels and preserve marine water quality and habitats.

“Our marine environment is precious, and we must explore every available avenue to address its viability and sustainability,” said Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester). “Funding through this grant program makes possible the kind of practical investments in pumpout facilities that make a real difference every day in keeping our waters clean so that we can all benefit from this.”

The Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries manages the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Clean Vessel Act program which is funded by the Sportfish Restoration Program.

“These pumpout projects all along our coast will make it easy and convenient for people who enjoy fishing and boating in Massachusetts’ coastal waters to help us keep those waters clean,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Through this collaborative effort with the federal government and our coastal communities, we are working to protect our important marine resources for generations to come.”

“These funds will greatly strengthen municipal and private efforts to keep the Commonwealth’s coastal waters pristine,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “Installing pumpout facilities provides a needed service to boaters while protecting public health and our marine ecosystems.”

Awarded district projects include:

  • Gloucester will receive $14,000 for a pumpout boat and a shoreside pumpout at the Cape Ann Marina and the City of Gloucester will use $76,000 for a pumpout boat and the installation of a new shoreside station and supporting float.
  • Ipswich will receive $64,750 to purchase a replacement pumpout boat.
  • The Manchester Marine will dedicate $3,000 for a pumpout cart and tight tank and the Town of Manchester will allocate $8,500 toward a pumpout boat.
  • Rockport will receive $8,500 for the purchase of a pumpout boat.
  • Rowley will receive $13,000 for a shoreside pumpout station, tight tank, and pumpout boat.

Since the program’s inception in 1994, Massachusetts’ harbors have put more pumpout boats in service than any other state. This extensive coverage, coupled with the many shoreside pumpout stations placed in service, provide the infrastructure needed to achieve and maintain the No Discharge Zone designation in all of the Commonwealth’s coastal waters.