A total of $14.6 million will be awarded to 28 states this year under the Clean Vessel Act grant program.
The grants will be used to fund the construction and installation of sewage pumpout facilities and floating restrooms, to purchase pumpout boats and provide educational programs for recreational boaters.
"Clean Vessel Act funds support construction of facilities in communities that depend on recreational boating for their economy, and depend on clean water for their health," Department of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in a statement. "These grants provide immediate funding for construction of infrastructure that will provide lasting value for recreational boaters, and everyone who relies on clean waters."
Administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the grants are paid for with money from the Sport Fishing and Boating Trust Fund, formerly known as the Aquatic Resources Trust Fund, which is supported by excise taxes levied on certain fishing and boating equipment and boat fuels.
"These Clean Vessel Act grants will help the states maintain clean and healthy waters for people and wildlife," U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Acting Director Rowan Gould said in a statement. "Sewage pumpouts may not be the most glamorous conservation tool, but their presence can have an immediate and clear impact on the well-being of aquatic resources and recreational waterways that provide drinking water to millions of Americans."