Home News Pickaway County Receives $15,645 in Funding to Enhance Waterway Safety

Pickaway County Receives $15,645 in Funding to Enhance Waterway Safety


COLUMBUS, Ohio — Demonstrating a steadfast commitment to bolstering safety measures on Ohio’s waterways, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) has allocated a total of $578,020 to 24 agencies across 22 Ohio counties. Pickaway County is among the recipients, receiving $15,645 from the ODNR Division of Parks and Watercraft. These funds are designated to fortify local marine patrol units and enhance recreational boating experiences.

According to Sheriff Matthew Hafey, the Grant will be used to pay deputies who will patrol the waterways for recreational hazards like OVI operation, Speeding in wake zones, and helping disabled boat situations.

Ross County received 17,269.74 and Fairfield Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office $10,592.11

ODNR Director Mary Mertz emphasized the importance of collaboration with local community partners to deliver essential watercraft-related services. “As boating continues to thrive in Ohio, ODNR depends on collaboration with local community partners to provide essential watercraft-related services,” Mertz stated. “These grants empower local law enforcement agencies to safeguard the well-being of boaters, canoeists, kayakers in Ohio’s lakes and rivers.”

The 2024 Marine Patrol Assistance grants aim to assist local law enforcement agencies in providing emergency responses to boating-related incidents, conducting routine waterway patrols, and acquiring safety equipment for deployment on marine patrol vessels.

This year’s grant recipients span across the Lake Erie and Ohio River regions, as well as in counties boasting multiple inland lakes. The complete list of recipients by county can be found on the ODNR website.

Boating remains a popular outdoor activity in Ohio, with 649,390 registered boats in 2023. Additionally, paddle sports have experienced notable growth among water sports enthusiasts, with Ohioans registering 318,984 paddle craft last year.

As the number of visitors to Ohio’s lakes and rivers continues to rise, Marine Patrol Assistance Grants play a crucial role in ensuring the safety of Ohio’s boaters. Essential boating safety information is available at watercraft.ohiodnr.gov.

Administered by the Division of Parks and Watercraft, Ohio’s boating and scenic rivers programs receive funding to support local marine patrol units from the state’s Waterways Safety Fund. This fund is sustained by the state motor fuel tax, watercraft registration and titling fees, and contributions from the U.S. Coast Guard.