Coastal Recreational Fishing License Grant Program

Under state law, revenue from sales of N.C. Coastal Recreational Fishing Licenses goes in two separate funds, both set up specifically to be used to manage, protect, restore, develop, cultivate and enhance the marine resources of the state. The Marine Resources Endowment Fund receives revenues from the sale of lifetime CRFLs. The Marine Resources Fund receives revenues from the sale of all other CRFLs.

Subject to annual availability, the DMF, in consultation with the WRC, may decide to issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) for consideration of funding.

The Strategic Plan for the Conservation and Improvement of North Carolina Marine Resources sets forth a framework of objectives and strategies to meet the statutory requirement that the fund be used to manage, protect, restore, develop, cultivate and enhance the marine resources of the state. The framework provides the basis upon which to evaluate and select proposals for CRFL funding. Example priority research needs have been compiled based on priority needs in Fishery Management Plans (FMPs) approved by the Marine Fisheries Commission, issues identified in the Coastal Habitat Protection Plan (CHPP), and research needs identified cooperatively with other agencies. The objectives and strategies are topics of particular interest at this time and do not represent an inclusive list of all priority needs in FMPs and the CHPP.

Only proposals from universities, community colleges, local/state North Carolina governmental entities, DMF, or WRC are eligible to receive funding. Individuals/groups desiring funding must partner with one of these eligible agencies.

View the Monthly CRFL Sales Updates

N.C. Marine Resources Fund N.C. Marine Resources Endowment Fund

Funding Information

Funding Information

If the decision is made by the Director of the DMF to issue a Request for Proposal, the process typically begins on June 1, with applications due by the last working day of July. Applicants will be notified by January 31 if their proposals have been approved for funding.

2020/2021 Fiscal Year Update

Division of Marine Fisheries Director Steve Murphey has decided not to issue a request for proposals for new Coastal Recreational Fishing License grants for the 2020-2021 fiscal year. The decision is due to several factors, including division funding priorities such as important division resource and habitat sampling and enhancement programs for the upcoming fiscal year, the need to ensure the continuance of currently funded grant projects, and the unknown implications of COVID-19 on Coastal Recreational Fishing License sales.

The decision was made under established procedures that specify that the director of the Division of Marine Fisheries will decide each year if funds are available to warrant a request for proposals from external entities. The Division of Marine Fisheries will reassess its research needs and outreach opportunities to determine the need for specific project requests at a later date.

If you have any questions, please contact Jamie Botinovch at or 252-808-8004.

Strategic Plans Administrative Procedures Contact


CRFL Program Coordinator 

Jamie Botinovch