Water SMART (Sustaining and Manage America's Resources for Tomorrow)


To make funding available for eligible applicants to leverage their money and resources by cost sharing with Reclamation on projects that conserve and use water more efficiently, increase the use of renewable energy and improve energy efficiency, benefit endangered and threatened species, facilitate water markets, or carry out other activities to address climate-related impacts on water or prevent any water-related crisis or conflict.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Agency: Department of the Interior
Office: Bureau of Reclamation
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Cooperative Agreements (Discretionary Grants)
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2014: $19 million in Federal funding was used to fund 36 new and ongoing WaterSMART Grant projects with a combined expected water savings of over 67,000 acre-feet. Fiscal Year 2015: Information not available. Fiscal Year 2016: Information not available.
Section 9504(a), Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009, (Public Law 111-11), as amended.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
In accordance with P.L. 111-11, Section 9502, eligible applicants include any: university, nonprofit research institution, or other organization with water or power delivery authority.

Applicants must also be located in the western U.S. or Territories as identified in the Reclamation Act of June 17, 1902, as amended and supplemented; specifically, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Virgin Islands.
Beneficiary Eligibility
The general public, agricultural, municipal and industrial water users; irrigation or water districts; and state governmental entities with water or power delivery authority, located in the states identified in the Act of June 17, 1902.
(1) A detailed written technical proposal including background data regarding the applicant, such as location, total project diversions, and relevant water use efficiency measurements, a detailed scope of work separating the work into major tasks, including any engineering or design work already completed, and describing data responsive to the evaluation criteria listed in the announcement. (2) When applicable, a funding plan showing how the applicant will pay for its 50 percent cost share requirement, and an official resolution adopted by the irrigation or water district's governing board of directors, resolving that, if selected, it will negotiate and execute a grant or cooperative agreement with Reclamation. (3) A detailed project cost proposal, including a budget with the annual estimated project costs, including salaries and wages, fringe benefits, travel, equipment, supplies, contracts, and indirect costs, an estimate of annual operation and maintenance costs, and the value of in-kind contributions of goods and services. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Environmental compliance for this program may be required depending on the scope of the specific project funded. This may result in the need for an environmental impact assessment or environmental impact statement prior to the commencement of project activities. An environmental impact statement is required for this program. An environmental impact assessment is required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Funding opportunity announcements. Announcement are posted annually on www.grants.gov. Submission of a complete technical proposal and projects budget is mandatory by the due date identified in the announcement. In addition, applicants must submit all applicable SF-424 forms refrenced in the Announcement.
Award Procedure
Proposals received in response to the announcement are reviewed on the basis of a competitive, merit-based review process, and are rated in accordance with the evaluation criteria stated in the announcement. Reclamation will make awards to the highest rated proposals based on the amount of funding available each year. For non-WaterSMART awards made under this CFDA using this statutory authority, the awards may be made competitively or non-competitively.
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
Contact Reclamation for the range of time when proposals are approved or disapproved.
Not applicable. Upon request, Reclamation will provide all aplicants with information on why their proposals were not selected.
Most awarded projects are fully funded at the time of award. Some Water and Energy Efficiency Grant projects (i.e. phased project) may be funded each year for up to three years.
How are proposals selected?
Projects should seek to conserve and use water more efficiently, increase the use of renewable energy and improve energy efficiency, protect endangered and threatened species, facilitate water markets, or carry out other activities to address climate-related impacts on water or prevent any water-related crisis or conflict.
How may assistance be used?
Water SMART Grants provide cost-shared financial assistance on a competitive basis to carry out water and energy efficiency improvements and other water management improvements. Reclamation may also provide financial assistance for these types of water conservation projects under this CFDA using this statutory authority, either competitively or non-competitively, for other non-Water SMART projects when another Reclamation CFDA is not available. In addition, Section 9504 of Public Law 111-11 requires the following:
(1)The Recipient shall not use any associated water savings to increase the total irrigated acreage of the Recipient or otherwise increase the consumptive use of water in the operation of the Recipient, as determined pursuant to the law of the State in which the operation of Recipient is located.
(2)If the activities funded under this Agreement result in an infrastructure improvement that is integral to the existing operations of a federally owned facility, the Federal Government shall continue to hold title to the facility and improvements to the facility.
(3)The non-Federal share of the cost of operating and maintaining any infrastructure improvement funded through this Agreement shall be 100 percent.
(4)Except as provided under chapter 171 of title 28, United States Code (commonly known as the ‘‘Federal Tort Claims Act’’), the United States shall not be liable for monetary damages of any kind for any injury arising out of an act, omission, or occurrence that arises in relation to any facility created or improved under this Agreement, the title of which is not held by the United States. For further information please contact the regional office.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Unless otherwise stated in the agreement document, recipients shall submit Program Peformance Reports, on a semi-annual basis. Upon completion of the agreement, recipients shall submit a final Program Performance Report and other specific reports that may be applicable to the agreement such as property inventories, and patent and invention disclosures. Cash reports are not applicable. Progress reports are not applicable. Recipients shall submit the Federal Financial Report, SF-425 during the term of the agreement and a final report upon completion of the agreement. Performance monitoring is not applicable.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503.
All recipients of Federal awards shall maintain project records in accordance with 2 CFR 200.333 Retention requirements for records. Financial records, supporting documents, statistical records, and all other non-Federal entity records pertinent to a Federal award must be retained for a period of three years from the date of submission of the final expenditure report or, for Federal awards that are renewed quarterly or annually, from the date of the submission of the quarterly or annual financial report, respectively, as reported to the Federal awarding agency or pass-through entity in the case of a subrecipient. Federal awarding agencies and pass-through entities must not impose any other record retention requirements upon non-Federal entities, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.333.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formulas are not applicable to this program.
Matching Requirements: The Federal share of the cost of a project or activity carried out under the Program shall not exceed 50 percent of the total cost of the project or activity. Costs of operation, maintenance, repair and rehabilitation of facilities funded under the authority for this Program shall be nonfederal responsibilities.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
In general, projects should be completed within 2 years of award. Applicants for Water and Energy Efficiency Grants must select one of two funding groups and must therefore propose either a project that can be completed within 2 years of award or a phased project that can be completed within 3 years of award with Federal funding to be provided separately for each phase. Applications for projects requiring more time will be considered for funding only under limited circumstances. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Payment terms vary by agreement awarded under this program.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
See Regional Agency Offices. http://www.usbr.gov/main/regions.html.
Headquarters Office
Josh German Bureau of Reclamation, Office of Policy and Administration, Mail Code: 84-51000, P.O. Box 25007, Denver Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225 Email: jgerman@usbr.gov Phone: (303) 445-2839 Fax: (702) 544-4207
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Cooperative Agreements (Discretionary Grants)) FY 14 $25,801,138; FY 15 est $19,000,000; and FY 16 est $23,300,000
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Range$50,000 - $1,000,000
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
2 CFR 200 UNIFORM ADMINISTRATIVE REQUIREMENTS, COST PRINCIPLES, AND AUDIT REQUIREMENTS FOR FEDERAL AWARDS and the applicable OMB Circulars. These documents may also be obtained by contacting the Bureau of Reclamation Office listed below.
Examples of Funded Projects
Fiscal Year 2014: A number of projects will address the connection between water use and energy use. For example, The Richmond Irrigation District in Utah will pipe approximately eight miles of open canal, install nine meters, and construct
two hydropower facilities with a combined 300 kilowatt capacity. The project is expected to result in annual water savings of 4,800 acre-feet.

Several projects will save energy through water conservation. For example, the Avra Valley Irrigation and Drainage District in Arizona will line 3.2 miles of open canal and will install flow meters and two new, more-efficient electric motors on irrigation pumps, expected to result in 525 acre-feet of water savings annually. The District estimates that completion of the project will decrease pumping needs and reduce energy consumption by approximately 2,635,918 kilowatt-hours per year.

Other projects are expected to make contributions to environmental restoration by conserving water or making other improvements that benefit endangered or threatened species. For example, in Oregon, the Central Oregon Irrigation District will undertake water management improvements with expected savings of 2,552 acre feet of water annually. Through a partnership with the Deschutes River Conservancy, 2,000 acre-feet of conserved water will be allocated as a permanent instream flow in a critical reach of the Crooked River.

Examples of all projects funded to date are available at http://www.usbr.gov/WaterSMART/weeg/. Fiscal Year 2015: Information not available. Fiscal Year 2016: Information not available.


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