07/17/2009

The Ministry of the Environment’s Ontario Drinking Water Stewardship Program (ODWSP) 2009-10 was for applicants that take action on protecting municipal drinking water sources.
Background:

The ODWSP was created by the Clean Water Act, 2006 to provide financial assistance to eligible persons and groups interested in taking immediate actions to protect their sources of municipal drinking water supplies. Financial assistance in the amount of $14 million will be made available over the next two years until 2011.   

This year, $7 million in financial assistance is available for:

  • Education and Outreach;
  • Special Projects; and
  • Early Actions.
Requests for grant proposals and applications for the Education and Outreach, Special Projects, and Early Actions components have been posted on the ministry’s website at www.ontario.ca/cleanwater and specific applications and requirements for these components can be found under Requests for Grant Proposals. 

Municipalities interested in applying for assistance to carry out drinking water supply protection projects are encouraged to visit the website and apply for financial assistance.

The MOE is currently providing financial assistance under the ODWSP for voluntary initiatives that help protect municipal drinking water sources. However, the Ministry advises that in the fall of 2009 the ODWSP will be undergoing a strategic shift to focus on providing financial assistance to those affected by the Act. As these persons will begin to be identified with the completion and release of assessment report technical information in the second half of 2009, and in order to accommodate this shift, the MOE may re-issue some or all of the Requests for Grant Proposals on its website.

Members may also be interested in reviewing MOE’s discussion paper on the Requirements for the Content and Preparation of Source Protection Plans available at: http://www.ebr.gov.on.ca/ERS-WEB-External/ under the EBR number PA06E0013. 

The discussion paper includes the minimum content requirements for plans, approaches to policy development, monitoring, Great Lakes issues and consultation requirements. Municipalities are encouraged to engage their Source Protection Committees in the development of the Source Protection Plans, particularly as the plans may include requirements for municipalities such as implementation of Official Plan amendments and monitoring. Members who wish to comment on the discussion paper are asked to copy Craig Reid at AMO at creid@amo.on.ca.

Action:

Municipalities are encouraged to apply for funding for drinking water source protection funding. AMO will continue to keep members up-to-date on developments related to the Clean Water Act.