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Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

FY 2020 Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Combined Request for Applications

The interagency Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) targets improvements to address the most significant environmental problems within the Great Lakes Basin. As one of 16 GLRI regional working group members, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service awards competitive grants to assist organizations and communities who are taking creative approaches to improve habitats and water quality. Learn more about projects funded through Forest Service GLRI grants in this Story Map.

Through an agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Forest Service anticipates up to $4.2 million in new funds will be available for tree planting and forest health improvement in the Great Lakes Basin. This funding will be competitively awarded to the best proposals received by the June 26, 2020, deadline. All applications must be prepared and submitted through; search for Grant Opportunity Number USDA-FS-2020-GLRI.

Anticipated funds will be distributed across four Program Areas described below. The minimum and maximum Federal funding requests vary depending on Program Area, with an overall range of $50,000 to $300,000. A 20% non-Federal cost share of the total program cost is required.

Award of grants is contingent on allocation of EPA funding.

Program Areas

  1. Forest Insect and Disease Mitigation – mitigate or control invasive forest insect and disease impacts on biodiversity or water quality.
  2. Reduce Runoff from Degraded Sites through Green Infrastructure – reduce stormwater runoff by planting trees and other vegetation as integral components of green infrastructure.
  3. Protect and Restore Coastal Wetlands through Healthy Tree Cover – restore habitats by increasing tree and other native plant cover to improve diversity, habitat function, water quality, and connectivity of coastal wetland systems.
  4. Restore Resilient Riparian and Shoreline Forests – treat forested riparian and shoreline habitat to improve habitat quality, resiliency to stressors, and water quality.

Who May Apply

State agencies, Tribal communities, nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, and local governments that work within the Great Lakes Basin of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

Important Dates

  • Tuesday, May 12, 2020 Webinar to discuss the Request for Applications purpose, program areas, eligibility, and how to apply. View webinar recording (link is external).
  • Friday, June 26, 2020 - Applications must be submitted through  6:00 p.m. Eastern (5:00 p.m. Central).
  • September 2020 (tentative) – The Forest Service expects to notify all applicants regarding their status as recipients.
  • October 1, 2020Project awards will be made after this date contingent on allocation of EPA funding.

FY 2020 GLRI Request for Applications Materials

We encourage all prospective applicants to locate the opportunity on (search USDA-FS-2020-GLRI) early in the process to review all application forms and subscribe to receive updates.

Agency-specific instructions and forms (required in addition to forms accessed and completed through the opportunity):

Past Forest Service GLRI Reference Information

Resources for Proposal Development

Contact Information

General Questions

If you have basic questions about the program, please contact Sheela Johnson, 224-999-1997,

Project Questions

If you have questions regarding the types of projects or components that will be considered, please contact your respective Field Office Representative:

  • Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, and Indiana:

Carleen Yocum, St. Paul Field Office Rep., 651-649-5276,

  • New York:

Michael Bohne, Acting Durham Field Office Rep., 603-868-7708,

  • Ohio and Pennsylvania:

Joe Koloski, Morgantown Field Office Rep., 304-285-1540, Questions

If you have questions regarding registration or creating an application in, contact customer support via toll-free number 800-518-4726 or email at


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