Wetland Program Development Grants - Category Definitions

Grant Category Definitions (Grouped by Core Element)


1. Monitoring and Assessment Core Element

Monitoring and Assessment

Involves methods development, data collection and analytical methods to interpret the ambient condition of wetland resources. Does not include monitoring done in support of other categories (e.g. mitigation). Examples include performing Tier 1, 2, or 3 assessments; development/refinement of assessment methodologies; wetland classification, wetland acreage tracking systems, and monitoring training for professional staff.

Wetland Delineation, ID, and Mapping

Involves the development of any techniques or approaches for the identification of wetlands on a watershed, state, or regional scale. Does not include project-specific mapping related to mitigation, vulnerable wetlands, or other categories.

2. Regulation Core Element

Wetland Regulatory Policy and Planning

Involves the development of regulatory wetlands protection programs, including but not limited to: the promulgation of and revisions to regulations and policy development, improved agency coordination, technical support of regulatory decision-making, development of SPGPs, 401 certification, permit tracking systems, and regulatory training for professional staff.

Pursuing Section 404 Assumption

Involves planning and development for assuming the federal CWA §404 program.

Vulnerable Wetlands

Involves the identification and development of a strategy for the protection of wetlands at risk because they are not jurisdictional under the Federal Clean Water Act.


Involves the development of policies, technical resources and evaluations designed to improve the effectiveness of compensatory mitigation.

Enforcement and Compliance

Involves the development of tools, policies, and techniques for ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements protecting wetlands.

3. Restoration and Protection Core Element

Restoration and Protection

Involves the development of plans for any on-the-ground restoration to demonstrate an innovative approach, restoration technique, or other activity directly related to the restoration of a pilot site or sites. Also includes projects involving the protection of endangered species.

4. Water Quality Standards Core Element

Water Quality Standards

Involves the scientific process for setting the expected ambient condition in order to evaluate the performance of wetland management practices and to determine trends in ambient condition. Includes WQS training for professional staff.

Cross-Cutting Activities

State/Tribal/Watershed Wetland Strategies

Involves the development of a non-regulatory, comprehensive wetlands protection plan by a state organization or federally recognized tribe. Category title describes the geographic coverage of the strategy rather than who created it.

Education and Outreach

Involves any educational or outreach program that informs the general public about wetland issues. General education and outreach should use this category even if the education is core element specific (ex/ an educational presentation on monitoring should use this project category). Does not include training of professional staff (such training should be categorized under the relevant core element(s)).

For more information on Core Elements Framework, click here.