ANNOUNCEMENT: Beginning January 14, 2019 the Recreational Trails Program (RTP), Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV), and Bike Path grant programs will be accepting applications until 5pm on March 14, 2019.
IMPORTANT: ALL applicants must be registered with GATA prior to the application deadline date. For more information on this process, please look here.
Grant Administration is responsible for managing and coordinating the Department's various recreational Grants-in-Aid programs Updated! to local government entities. These programs provide federal and state funds to enhance and improve recreational amenities through a competitive selection process. The programs include the Open Space Land Acquisition and Development (OSLAD) Program. This funds projects which will provide new recreational facilities such as parks and playgrounds. The Bikeway's Program provides for bike trail enhancement and development. The Boat Access program provides for new and improved boat accesses. The Snowmobile Access & Development program provides for new and improved snowmobile trails and trail access.
- Administer eight Department competitive outdoor recreational grant programs for units of local government, two programs open to various organizations for public facilities, and one for not-for-profit organizations.
- Administer various non-competitive, legislatively mandated grants to local governments and quasi-governmental organizations.
- Jointly administer or provide competitive scoring of grant programs assigned to other state agencies or Department divisions.
- Act as direct liaison between the Department and various organizations representing grant recipients.
- Provide oversight and inspection of previously awarded grant projects to ensure program compliance.
- Act as direct liaison with National Park Service and other agencies with grant oversight responsibilities.
We can be contacted at DNR.Grants@illinois.gov
All the programs operate on a cost reimbursement basis to local governments or not-for-profit entities for approved project elements. Funding through these programs is competitively awarded on an annual basis based upon written applications submitted to the Department by specified deadline dates for each program. Applications for assistance are evaluated and prioritized by the Department for funding according to specific criteria and goals established for each of the programs and designed to make selection of projects equitable and responsive to statewide and local outdoor recreation needs. All grant assisted facilities must be designed to accommodate the physically disabled and be open to the general public without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, age, or residence.
The outdoor recreation grant programs available through the Department of Natural Resources are divided into groups.