Presenter: Tim Hogsett

Commission Agenda Item No. 5
Action
Boating Ramp Grant Funding
January 22, 2009

I. Executive Summary: The Department has recently received sixteen applications for public boating access construction and renovation projects requesting $4,914,244 in matching fund assistance. Federal boating access funds are available to fund, or partially fund, thirteen projects. Funding approval of 13 projects totaling $2,922,255 is recommended.

II. Discussion: Local Boating Access Grants: The State Boating Access Program was authorized in 1975 by the Sixty-fourth Legislature. The program provides funds for the purchase, construction, renovation and maintenance of boat ramps, access roads and other related facilities to improve public recreational boating access to public waters. The program receives funding from the Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act, also known as the Wallop-Breaux Program. Fifteen percent of the State's annual apportionment from the federal Wallop-Breaux Program must be used to provide public access for motor boating facilities. Construction for approved projects is supported on a 75 percent (federal), 25 percent (local) basis.

The Department has recently received sixteen applications for renovations of existing or new boat ramp construction requesting $4,914,244 in matching fund assistance. Based on project review and analyses, staff recommends focusing available funding toward project elements that directly address public boating access improvements. Funding for support facilities such as pavilions and restrooms is not recommended at this time. As a result, 13 of 16 submitted projects are recommended for funding though most projects are awarded fewer grant funds than requested. Three projects are not recommended for funding at this time and will be held over for future funding cycles. The projects have been ranked in descending order of priority. Exhibit A contains the priority listing with funds requested by the sponsors and funds recommended by staff.

All facilities will be operated and maintained by the local government sponsors.

III. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt the following motion:

"Funding for boating access construction/renovation projects listed in Exhibit A in the amount of $2,922,255 is approved."

Attachments - 1

  1. Exhibit A - Project Descriptions

Commission Agenda Item No. 5
Exhibit A

Boating Access Project Descriptions
January 22, 2009

Project Sponsor: City of Aransas Pass

Project: Harbor boat ramp improvements

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $334,500

Location: Boat ramp at Conn Brown Harbor on Redfish Bay, San Patricio County

Discussion: The City of Aransas Pass is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $334,500 to improve and expand a 2-lane boat ramp, by adding another 2-lane ramp, expand the courtesy dock, improve the parking area, construct a pavilion, and new lighting and signing. The facility provides public boating access to the Intracoastal Waterway and Redfish Bay.

Recommendation: Support the project. Existing ramps are heavily used and the city is implementing a master plan to improve public boating facilities on Conn Brown Harbor. Funding to construct a pavilion at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $267,750


Project Sponsor: City of Corpus Christi

Project: Billing’s Boat Ramp Renovation

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $500,000

Location: Boat Ramp on Laguna Madre under JFK Causeway, Nueces County

Discussion: The City of Corpus Christi is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $500,000 to renovate/improve a 2-lane boat ramp, access road, parking area, utilities, courtesy dock, bulkhead and signs. The facility provides public boating access to Laguna Madre and the Intracoastal Waterway.

Recommendation: Support the project. Heavily used, but aged ramp; parking lot is in terrible condition with poor drainage; ramp and docks need renovation. TPWD facility on GLO leased property.

Support in Matching Funds: $500,000



Project Sponsor: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Project: Fairfield Lake State Park Boat Ramp Renovation

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $78,750

Location: Two boat Ramp on Fairfield Lake, Freestone County

Discussion: The State Park Division is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $78,750 to renovate/improve a two 1-lane boat ramps, new courtesy docks, dredging and signs. The facility provides public boating access to Fairfield Lake.

Recommendation: Support the project. One ramp is being undercut and other ramp has material build-up, too shallow to launch most craft. Neither ramp has a useable courtesy dock. TPWD managed facility.

Support in Matching Funds: $78,750


Project Sponsor: Brazos River Authority

Project: Possum Kingdom Lake Boat Ramp Renovations

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $82,500

Location: Possum Kingdom Lake, Palo Pinto County

Discussion: The Brazos River Authority is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $82,500 for renovation of 2 boat ramps and bulkheads, new courtesy docks, lighting, and signs. The facility provides public boating access to Possum Kingdom Lake.

Recommendation: Support the project. Boat ramps are located in a popular location but damaged and in risk of collapse. Sponsor has renovated other ramps in recent years and has produced a high quality project at a relatively low cost.

Support in Matching Funds: $82,500


Project Sponsor: Somervell County Water District

Project: Wheeler Branch Reservoir Boat Ramp

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $450,000

Location: Somervell

Discussion: The Somervell County Water District is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $450,000 to construct a new 2-lane boat ramp, courtesy docks, restroom, fish cleaning station, parking area, access drive, bulkheads and dredging. The facility will provide access to a newly constructed water supply reservoir near the City of Glen Rose.

Recommendation: Support the project. Project was submitted last year but not funded due to availability of funding. Facility will provide public access to new reservoir. Funding to construct a restroom and fish cleaning station at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $363,750


Project Sponsor: City of Austin

Project: Lake Walter E. Long Boat Ramp Renovation

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $157,500

Location: Lake Walter E. Long (Decker Lake), Travis County

Discussion: The City of Austin is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $157,500 for renovation of a 4 lane boat ramp and restroom, resurface parking lot, and construct ADA walkway. The facility provides public boating access to Lake Walter E. Long.

Recommendation: Support the project. Heavily used, but aged ramp and parking lot are in immediate need of renovation. Funding to renovate a restroom at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $99,000


Project Sponsor: City of Abilene

Project: Lake Fort Phantom Hill Boat Ramp Renovations

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $499,875

Location: Lake Fort Phantom Hill, Taylor County

Discussion: The City of Abilene is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $499,875 for renovation of boat ramps, new restroom, wave attenuator, fish cleaning station, picnic tables, utilities, signs, and resurface parking lot. The facility provides public boating access to Lake Fort Phantom Hill.

Recommendation: Support the project. Very popular regional boating destination. Facilities are aged and in need of repair. Wave attenuator needed to reduce erosion caused by wave action. Funding to construct a restroom and fish cleaning station at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $331,884


Project Sponsor: Brazoria County

Project: Boat Ramp Dock Repairs

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $27,900

Location: Three locations in Brazoria County

Discussion: Brazoria County is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $27,900 to repair three separate boat ramp, courtesy docks, bulkheads and erosion control. The 3 public ramps are located on the San Bernard River, Chocolate Bayou, and Hall’s Bayou.

Recommendation: Support the project. Docks aged and damaged during storm surges from 2008 hurricane season.

Support in Matching Funds: $27,900



Project Sponsor: City of Brady

Project: Brady Lake Boat Ramp Improvements

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $348,645

Location: Brady Lake, McCulloch County

Discussion: The City of Brady is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $348,645 for construction of a new restroom and repairs to the marina, boat ramp and courtesy dock. The facility provides public boating access to Lake Brady.

Recommendation: Support the project. Popular regional boating destination. Fund repairs to boat ramp and docks. Funding to construct a restroom at the site is not recommended at this time. Grant funding for marina facilities is not eligible under federal guidelines.

Support in Matching Funds: $54,600


Project Sponsor: City of Cottonwood Shores

Project: Lake Marble Falls Boat Ramp

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $180,000

Location: Lake Marble Falls, Burnet County

Discussion: The City of Cottonwood Shores is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $180,000 for construction of a new boat ramp, parking area, access road, restroom, courtesy docks, landscaping, lighting, and signs. The facility provides public boating access to Lake Marble Falls.

Recommendation: Support the project. New boat ramp in a new city park. No public boat ramps on this side of lake. Funding to construct a restroom at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $142,170


Project Sponsor: Muenster Water District

Project: Muenster Lake Boat Ramp

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $472,717

Location: Muenster Lake, Cooke County

Discussion: The Muenster Water District is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $472,717 for construction of a new 2 lane boat ramp, parking lot, access road, restroom, courtesy dock, and signs.

Recommendation: Support the project. New, and first, public boat ramp on reservoir constructed in 2006. Lake has been stocked with fish and project will provide public boating access to reservoir. Funding to construct a restroom at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $443,880



Project Sponsor: City of Lake Dallas

Project: Lake Lewisville Boat Ramp

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $500,000

Location: Lake Lewisville, Denton County

Discussion: The City of Lake Dallas is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $500,000 for construction of a new boat ramp, parking lot, access road, restroom, walkways, lighting, and signs.

Recommendation: Support the project. New public boat ramp in city park being developed on land leased from the Corps of Engineers. Lake Lewisville is a very popular boating destination. Funding to construct a restroom at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $258,772


Project Sponsor: City of Grapevine

Project: Meadowmere Park Boat Ramp

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $500,000

Location: Lake Grapevine, Tarrant County

Discussion: The City of Grapevine is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $500,000 for construction of a new 2 lane boat ramp, courtesy dock, access drive, restroom and walkways. The facility will provide public boating access to Lake Grapevine.

Recommendation: Support the project. Facility will provide public boating access to lake at lower water levels, existing ramp unusable during many times of the year. Funding to construct a restroom at the site is not recommended at this time.

Support in Matching Funds: $271,299


Project Sponsor: Galveston County

Project: Dickinson Bayou Boat Ramp Renovation

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $389,214

Location: City of Dickinson on Dickinson Bayou, Galveston County

Discussion: Galveston County is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $389,214 for renovation of a 2-lane boat ramp, courtesy dock, parking area, access drive, and dredging, new bulkhead, lighting, signing shoreline stabilization. The facility provides public boating access to Dickinson Bayou.

Recommendation: Do not fund the project at this time. Limited funding. Sponsor has another funded boat ramp project and has not initiated construction.

Support in Matching Funds: $0



Project Sponsor: Aransas Navigation District No. 1

Project: Copano Bay Boat Ramp Improvements

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $325,143

Location: South side of Copano Bay Fishing Pier off SH 35, Aransas County

Discussion: The Aransas Navigation District No. 1 is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $325,143 to expand of a boat ramp parking area, construct a boat wash area, covered picnic tables and ADA walkway. The facility provides public boating access to Copano Bay.

Recommendation: Do not fund project at this time. Limited funding. Sponsor has previously received over $700,000 of grant funding to renovate site with construction nearing completion. Hold project until next year to see if demonstrated use of site supports expanding the parking area.

Support in Matching Funds: $0


Project Sponsor: Brazos River Authority

Project: Lake Granbury Boat Ramp Renovation

Matching Funds Requested (75%): $67,500

Location: Lake Granbury, Hood County

Discussion: The Brazos River Authority is requesting a 75 percent matching share grant in the amount of $67,500 for renovation of a boat ramp and bulkheads, new lighting, and signs. The facility provides public boating access to Lake Granbury.

Recommendation: Do not fund the project at this time. Limited funding. Sponsor submitted two grant applications and indicated the other project was a higher priority. Try and fund next funding cycle.

Support in Matching Funds: $0


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