OCEAN PINES – A Maryland Coastal Bays Program (MCBP) presentation highlighted efforts to seek state funding for a restoration project at Jenkins Point.
Last Saturday, MCBP Watershed Coordinator Steve Farr came before the Ocean Pines Association Board of Directors to present an update on the Jenkins Point resilience project.
Late last year, MCBP applied to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for funding to reestablish the eroding Jenkins Point Peninsula, located in the Isle of Wight Bay just offshore of the Ocean Pines Yacht Club. To that end, the local agency approached the association with plans to pursue grant funding for the project.
“Last year, we approached [Director] Doug Parks to consider some opportunities for resilience projects because we know that Maryland DNR had put out this RFP and was looking for opportunities to protect community assets as well as protect habitats,” Farr said. “We looked at several opportunities in Ocean Pines, and Jenkins Point really popped out above anything else.”
Farr noted the proposal MCBP had submitted was not selected, but officials were encouraged to reapply. And in May, the board voted to commit $10,000 toward the project as part of the grant process.
“We have since had discussions with DNR and they have encouraged us to submit another proposal for this project,” he said. “In the interim, they said one of the main reasons it did not rate higher, relative to others was that there was no local cost share offered, which we brought to the attention of Doug and the board, and last summer a $10,000 cost share was approved to go along with this grant, to basically match the DNR resources. That’s always a big help with grants like these, to show local skin in the game.”
Farr told board members last week he was making a presentation as part of the grant requirement. He added he was also seeking some reconfirmation from the board in support of the project.
“The total budget is somewhere in the realm of $80,000, including that $10,000 from Ocean Pines,” he said. “The project would be limited to design and permitting for this project. It would not involve moving forward with implementation. Of course, we would look to partner closely with you all and the community – if the project is approved and we have funding for it – to monitor and participate in the development of the design.”
During his comments last week, Association President Larry Perrone said he had concerns about Ocean Pines’ funding commitments.
“The second part of this is whether or not DNR is going to be looking for Ocean Pines to put a substantial amount of money into this,” he said. “If I remember from seeing the original documents, we’re talking about a multi-million-dollar project.”
Farr said MCBP would work with the association to secure any funding for the project.
“We would work with you to seek other grants if DNR funding was not enough to move forward with the project,” he said. “There are other opportunities to get money for projects like this.”