Building Partnerships for a Healthier Gulf
Gulf of Mexico Alliance
e-Newsletter March 2018  
Jump to our regular sections on Restoration , Funding , and Comment Periods .
Planning for All Hands 2018 Is Underway

It is time to make your plans for All Hands 2018. Registration is open and the Alliance is preparing a full week of meetings. Expect to find drafts of Team agendas soon on the website. Be sure to visit
the  2018 All Hands event page for registration, schedules, and sponsorship information.

The  GOMA Tools CafĂ© is back for a third year. Submissions are requested from any Alliance partner interested in sharing more about their online or paper-based tool(s). Please click here for additional information and submittal form. Submissions are due via email by Friday, April 13, 2018.
Each year the meeting rotates between on of the five U.S. Gulf states, This year it will be held at the Hilton Bayfront Downtown, St. Petersburg, Florida. The Group rate is $139/night or the prevailing government rate, call  1-800-445-8667  and mention "Gulf of Mexico Alliance Meeting". To reserve a government room rate follow this link To make a non-government rate room reservation ($139/night) use this link The hotel block deadline is May 11, 2018.
Ocean Hour - A Grassroots Effort

The concept of Ocean Hour is to spend at least one hour every Saturday cleaning a local beach or waterway in the northwest Florida. It started with one woman and has grown to be so much more. The non-profit group works in northwest Florida. Through hard work and diligence, they are now in demand and work with everyone from youth groups, the local military naval station, to the national park service.
GCOOS Receives High Quality Certification

The Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System Regional Association (GCOOS) passed a milestone this month when they received official certification by NOAA and the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS). The certification means that GCOOS real-time or near-time data meets the highest quality standards.

GCOOS is the heart of data collection for ocean and coastal waters in the Gulf of Mexico. It collects thousands of data points from sensors and ensuring that the information is reliable, timely, and accurate before disseminating it to the ocean sectors that rely on it.  
Beach Visitor Survey

Mississippi State University and GCOOS are conducting a survey for Gulf Coast Beach Visitors to aid in the development of a beach goer app. To aid them in the early stages of development, a short 10-minute survey is open. They are interested in how often people visit coastal beaches, where they go, and the information they would like when taking that outing.


Activities related to Deepwater Horizon oil spill research and restoration are updated monthly.

Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council (RESTORE Council) -
This month the Council's Acting Executive Director recommended the Florida Stand-Up State Expenditure Plan for approval. If approved, this plan would provide funding to support financial and managerial activities necessary for restoration project implementation under "Bucket 3". He also recommended the approval of Mississippi's 2017 State Expenditure Plan Amendment. Amendments typically address funding allocations for specific projects or programs.

The Council announced that the Council-funded, State of Florida Apalachicola Bay Oyster Restoration project completed the construction phase. The Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve will monitor for oyster colonization over the next two years. Complete information on these and other projects is available on
U.S. Department of Treasury - All RESTORE Act Direct Component activities administered by the Department of Treasury are listed on the official website

In the States

Florida - The Gulf Consortium and  Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) maintain websites of related restoration information. Triumph Gulf Coast, Inc., is a nonprofit corporation organized to oversee the expenditure of 75 percent of all funds recovered by the Florida attorney general for economic damages to the state that resulted from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Triumph activity can be found  here.    
Alabama - This month the Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council made a major announcement concerning $315 million going to Mobile and Baldwin Counties. The funding will support nearly 50 projects covering infrastructure, environmental restoration, and economic development. A public comment period on the selected projects will open soon. Read more on this story here. All  AGCRC activities are on their website. 
Mississippi - Restoration in Mississippi is led by the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality. Visit the Office of Restoration web page for announcements, procurement opportunities, project updates, and more.
Louisiana - This month it was reported that the first stage of the Whiskey Island restoration is nearing completion. The diversion of the sandy slurry is restoring the island that helps protect Terrebonne and Laforche parishes.The State of Louisiana is represented by the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) on state and RESTORE Council activities. Restoration activities are conducted in conjunction with the State's Master Plan. C oastal Louisiana restoration updates are available on the CPRA website.

TexasAll Deepwater Horizon related Texas restoration activities can be found on .

Centers of Excellence

Florida RESTORE Act Centers of Excellence Program ( FLRACEP)
Alabama Center of Excellence (ACE)
Mississippi Based RESTORE Act Center of Excellence ( MBRACE)
RESTORE Act Center of Excellence Louisiana
Texas OneGulf
Texas Subsea Systems Institute

NOAA RESTORE Act Science Program -   This month the program showcased results of several studies to include a new data portal for fish spawning aggregations, genomics guide for coral, and a survival study on Atlantic Bluefin Tuna larvae. These updates and more information are found on their dedicated website. 

National Academy of Sciences (NAS) Gulf Research Program - Announcements and activities related to Gulf of Mexico research and restoration can be found on the Gulf Research Program website

Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) -  The Implementation Groups (TIGs) announcements this month include:
  • On February 22, the Florida TIG approved its Phase V.2 Florida Coastal Access Project: Final Restoration Plan and Supplemental Environmental Assessment.
  • The Louisiana TIG approved and released the Final Strategic Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment #3: Restoration of Wetlands, Coastal and Nearshore Habitats in the Barataria Basin, Louisiana. The plan includes sediment diversion, marsh creation, and ridge restoration.
All Trustee activities and comprehensive Gulf NRDA information is available on

National Fish & Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) - 
NFWF recently released their 2017 Annual Report which updates the status and successes of their key programs. They also have several grant opportunities open. The NFWF Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund website has information on all funded projects with a map of all their programs worldwide.  

North American Conservation Wetlands Act fund (NAWCA) - 2018 grant deadlines and other information are available on the NAWCA website. A meta-database is available to search for previous awards. The U.S. Standard Grants, Cycle 2 are due July 13, 2018.

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) - Get comprehensive information on GoMRI research at 

Visit the Deepwater Horizon Project Tracker Story Map.

The Gulf of Mexico Alliance maintains a Funding Opportunities web page of current opportunities. Below are selected opportunities from that page.

Link to Funding Opportunities page

Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR)  ACAMP Funding  - The RFP is for Alabama coastal county related projects that protect, enhance, and improve the management of natural, cultural and historical coastal resources and that increase the sustainability, resiliency and preparedness of coastal communities. The deadline is April 6, 2018 .

NAS Understanding Gulf Ocean Systems Grants 1 - The Gulf Research Program seeks to support activities that will supply new observations, analyses, and modeling needed to advance our understanding of Loop Current dynamics for the purpose of improving predictive skills of the Loop Current and associated eddies, referred to as the Loop Current System (LCS). The deadline is April 25, 2018.

The Lawrence Foundation Grants - This private family foundation is focused on making grants to support environmental, education, human services and other causes. The proposal deadlines are twice a year, April 30 and November 1, 2017.

NOAA FY2018-FY2020 NOAA Broad Agency Announcement - The purpose of this notice is to request applications for special projects and programs associated with NOAA's strategic plan and mission goals, as well as to provide the general public with information and guidelines on how NOAA will select applications and administer discretionary Federal assistance under this Broad Agency Announcement (BAA). The deadline is May 15, 2018.

Florida Humanities Council Community Project Grants - Grants provide support for planning and implementation of public humanities programs and resources that meet the needs and interests of local communities. The deadlines are May 18 and July 20, 2018.

NEH Division of Preservation and Access Common Heritage - Common Heritage will support both the digitization of cultural heritage materials and the organization of outreach through community events that explore and interpret these materials as a window on the community's history and culture. The deadline is May 31, 2018. 
Science and Restoration  Funding Calendar
commentComment Periods

Click here to request a comment period to be shared in our next newsletter.   
The NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office has a request for comments open: Exempted Fishing Permits to Allow State Pilot Projects for the Management of Recreational Red Snapper Fishing in the Gulf of Mexico. The deadline to comment is April 2, 2018.

The NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office maintains a bulletin of public notices and news releases related to topics of importance on many Gulf of Mexico issues.

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council has a website that includes fish regulations, amendments, and meeting announcements. See their Public Hearings for updates on sea turtle release protocol, venting tools, state management of recreational Red snapper, and other pertinent fishery management issues.

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