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Trees for Tribs Grant Program

Map depicting different watersheds in NYS, indicating that all of the state except the Hudson River Watershed are eligible for the grant.
Map of eligible watersheds - click to enlarge (PDF 1.88 MB)

The Trees for Tribs Grant Program supports efforts to reforest New York's tributaries, or small creeks and streams, which flow into and feed larger rivers and lakes. The goal of the program is to support communities in planting young trees and shrubs along stream corridors, also known as riparian areas, to prevent erosion, increase flood water retention, improve wildlife and stream habitat, as well as protect water quality.

2018 Grants

The most successful applications for the first round of the Trees for Tribs grants emphasized native plant species selection, appropriate planting techniques, and planting plans for each planting site from a qualified professional. Applicants also had to clearly demonstrate that they included an education and volunteer engagement component, including community events and utilizing volunteers to plant trees and shrubs. Priority was given to projects that provided long-term maintenance plans and had partner support.

DEC awarded $379,878.55 from the New York State Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) to ten projects. Additional information about the Trees for Tribs Grant Program can be found below in the following sections:


2018 Grant Recipients

Grantee Project Grant Amount
Town of Winfield Town of Winfield Memorial Park Riparian Tree Planting $56,000.00
Finger Lakes Cultural & Natural History Museum Sugar Creek Restoration Project $38,000.00
Town of Whitestown Sauquoit Creek Channel & Floodplain Restoration Project, Lower Sauquoit $25,000.00
Town of Richmond Sandy Bottom Park Trees for Tribs $18,598.00
Onondaga Environmental Institute, Inc. Riparian Restoration of the Ley Creek Watershed $88,045.00
Housatonic Valley Association, Inc. Partnering to Restore Streamside Vegetation in New York's Housatonic Valley $49,030.75
Seatuck Environmental Association, Inc. Upper Penataquit Creek Riparian Restoration $28,600.00
Town of North Hempstead Trees for Manhasset Valley Park $37,500.00
Erie County Department of Parks, Recreation & Forestry Isle View Tree Planting Project $11,757.80
Town of Brookhaven Reforestation of Bay Avenue Farm East Morciches & Meadow Lane Blue Point $27,347.00

For detailed information about each project, view the 2018 Trees for Tribs Grant Project Descriptions (PDF, 11 KB).

Program Overview and Specifics

Request for Applications

Request for Applications (RFA) (PDF, 871 KB) -- The RFA provides details on the project objectives, application process, eligible expenditures, evaluation criteria, and contractual requirements for the Trees for Tribs grant program.

Application Deadline

The application period is closed. Applications are currently being scored and awards are expected to be made in December 2018.

Several people planting trees along a stream.

Minimum and Maximum Award Amounts

Minimum grant amount is $11,000. Maximum grant amount is $100,000.


This grant program has no match requirement. Grant funds are available for up to 100% of the requested budget.

Projected Term

All projects must have defined objectives, tasks, and deliverables that can be completed within a two-year contract term.

Eligible Project Type

Riparian Tree Planting - Planting trees and shrubs along streams on public and private property improves wildlife habitat, water quality and climate and storm resiliency. Eligible activities include: landowner outreach and education, planting plan development, site preparation, riparian planting (including: native trees and shrubs, plant shipping costs, tree tubes, weed mats, stakes), equipment rentals, contractor and staff expenses.

Who may apply?

Eligible applicants include:

Municipalities, Academic Institutions, and 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporations whose projects are located within the eligible geographic boundaries defined in this Request For Applications. Other groups such as unincorporated river associations must apply through a municipality, not-for-profit, or academic institution as the designated lead.

How do I apply?

All New York State (NYS) grant applicants - governmental, academic institutions, and 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organizations - must be registered in the NYS Grants Gateway (leaves DEC's website) to be eligible to apply for any NYS grant opportunity.

Not-For-Profit applicants must prequalify in the Grants Gateway system prior to the application deadline to be considered eligible to apply for a grant. Registration and prequalification must be completed online at the NYS Grants Gateway (leaves DEC's website).

On July 25, 2018 a webinar was held reviewing the specifics of the RFA and how to submit an application in the Grants Gateway. The webinar was recorded and is available for viewing (leaves DEC's website).

NYS Grants Gateway Questions

Questions about registration and prequalification through the Grants Gateway should be directed to 518-474-5595 or email Step-by-step tutorials and guides to registration and prequalification are available at the NYS Grants Gateway (leaves DEC's website).

General Questions

General questions about the grant program can be directed to the contact below:

Mary Hegarty, Statewide Trees for Tribs Coordinator
NYSDEC, Lands and Forests
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12233-4250

Resources for Grantees

Narrative/Qualitative Progress Reports

Grantees are required to submit quarterly narrative/qualitative progress reports describing progress made towards project objectives during the quarter, problems encountered, and steps taken to solve them. These reports must be submitted no later than 30 days from the end of the quarter for each quarter of the contract term beginning with the quarter in which the award was made, regardless of whether any money has been spent.

Grantees should use the NYS Grants Gateway (leaves DEC website) to submit quarterly progress reports.

Progress Report Walkthrough (PDF, 275 KB) - Instructions for preparing narrative/qualitative progress reports in Grants Gateway.

Expenditure Reports and Reimbursement Requests

Grantees are required to submit quarterly expenditure reports detailing project expenditures by object of expense. These reports must be submitted not later than 30 days from the end date for which reimbursement is being claimed. The quarterly expenditure reports should be submitted along with the State Aid Voucher requesting reimbursement.

Grant Payment Request Instructions (PDF, 23 KB) - Instructions for preparing the Expenditure Report and State Aid Voucher to request a reimbursement payment for grant expenditures.

All reimbursement requests should include all of the following documents:

Expenditure Report (PDF, 62 KB) - This form is used for reporting program expenditures detailed by object of expense.

State Aid Voucher and Instructions (PDF, 147 KB) - This voucher is the request for payment.

Hard copies of all reimbursement requests (including original signatures) should be mailed to DEC using the address below:

Vicky Wagenbaugh
NYS DEC, Division of Lands and Forests
625 Broadway, 5th Floor
Albany, NY 12233-4250

Requests for reimbursement will not be processed if a narrative/qualitative progress report has not been submitted and approved for the same reporting period.

MWBE Compliance

Grantees are required to submit a Quarterly MWBE Contractor Compliance Report Form by the 10th day following each end of quarter of the project documenting the progress made towards achievement of the MWBE goals of the Contract.

MWBE Goals & Reporting Responsibilities - Link to the DEC Division of Management & Budget Services web page where information about goals and forms can be found. A link to the MWBE quarterly report form can be found in the MWBE Reporting Requirements section near the bottom of the page.


Applicants selected to receive a grant award are required to use the NYS Grants Gateway (leaves DEC website) to execute a Master Contract for Grants (MCG) within 60-90 days from the time of award notification. Failure to submit required MCG documents in a timely manner may cause a grantee to lose their grant award.

A link to download a PDF copy of the standard NYS Master Contract for Grants can be found on the NYS Grants Reform (leaves DEC website) home page.

Grantees can find a copy of their contract by following the instructions below:

  1. Log in to NYS Grants Gateway (leaves DEC website), then click on the Contracts link near the top of the Home screen.
  2. Search for the contract using the search criteria on the Contracts screen. Entering less information will yield more results. Leaving all fields blank will return all contracts for your organization.
  3. In the Search Results section that appears below the search criteria, click the Application Number link for the appropriate contract.
  4. Click the Forms Menu link on the Contract Main Page.
    1. Before the contract has been signed by the grantee, use the Contract Preview link near the bottom of the Application/Contract Menu - Forms page to download a PDF copy of the contract.
    2. After the contract has been signed by grantee, use the Contract Versions link to find links to download a PDF copy of the contract as available following its signature throughout the review process, including the following versions:
      • Unsigned Contract;
      • Grantee Signed Contract;
      • Agency Signed Contract (this will be the final "Executed" version for contracts with a contract number that begins with "T");
      • Attorney General Signed Contract; and
      • OSC Approval (this will be the final "Executed" version for contracts with a contract number that begins with "C").