TIDELANDS TRUST FUND PROGRAM

Accepting Tidelands applications starting May 31, 2022.

WHAT IS THE TIDELANDS TRUST FUND?

The Tidelands Trust Fund is comprised of funds derived from the lease of tidelands and submerged lands. It is administered by the Secretary of State’s Office and Mississippi Department of Marine Resources as mandated by state law, Title 29 Section 15 of the Mississippi Code of 1972:

Any funds derived from lease rentals of tidelands and submerged lands, except those funds derived from mineral leases, or funds previously specifically designated to be applied to other agencies, shall be transferred to the special fund. However, funds derived from lease rentals may be used to cover the administrative cost incurred by the Secretary of State. Any remaining funds derived from lease rentals shall be disbursed pro rata to the local taxing authorities for the replacement of lost ad Val orem taxes, if any. Then, any remaining funds shall be disbursed to the commission for new and extra programs of tidelands management, such as conservation, reclamation, preservation, acquisition, education, or the enhancement of public access to the public trust tidelands or public improvement projects as they relate to those lands.

WHAT ARE TIDELANDS?

Lands that are covered and uncovered daily by water from the action of the tides, up to the mean line of the ordinary high tides.

PROGRAM HISTORY

The Tidelands Trust Fund Program began in 1994. Its mission is to carry out state policy by balancing the interests of upland private property owners and the general public over the use of public trust tidelands and submerged land of the State of Mississippi.

 

Applications for Tidelands Trust Funds are accepted by Mississippi Department of Marine Resources each year.

  • An in-house compliance review is conducted by Mississippi Department of Marine Resources’s tidelands administrator to ensure that all applications are complete and legible.
  • The Merit Review Committee then begins its review process. The committee is comprised of Mississippi Department of Marine Resources cadre staff and various local experts from the marine science field. Their review process follows a project selection criterion which is established by the Commission on Marine Resources. Examples of the selection criteria include, but are not limited to, level of anticipated benefits to be gained from project, level of beneficial impact/enhancement, level of need for the project and compliance with the intent of Mississippi Code § 29-15-9.
  • Upon completion of the Merit Committee’s review, recommendations on projects are made to the Commission on Marine Resources. After the commissioners review the applications, they are then submitted to the Legislature for appropriation in January. The Legislature has ultimate authority in deciding the appropriation of Tidelands funds.
  • Mississippi Department of Marine Resources notifies all recipients of Tidelands funds by mail in May with the amount of money their projects will receive.
  • Upon receipt of funds from the Secretary of State’s Office in December, Mississippi Department of Marine Resources disburses the funds as mandated.
  • Recipients of Tidelands Trust Funds sign a Tidelands Grant Agreement upon receipt of funds and are responsible for meeting the terms of the Grant Agreement. Some of these may include stipulations, such as to provide Mississippi Department of Marine Resources with a semi-annual and final report upon completion of the project, photographs (if applicable), the results of an independent audit, the presence of a prominent, permanent sign that clearly states the origin of the funds and the necessary permits for construction of projects.

The Tidelands Trust Fund Program is dedicated to the conservation, reclamation and preservation of Mississippi’s tidelands, while also proudly enhancing its current public access areas. Mississippi Department of Marine Resources takes great pride in administering the Tidelands Trust Fund to the best interest of Mississippi’s marine resources.

AWARDED PROJECTS

Port Security Grant Program 2020 – GulfportMDMR
Port Security Grant Program 2020 – PascagoulaMDMR
MS Gulf Coast National Heritage AreaMDMR
Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve Operations MatchMDMR
Sportfish Restoration Act – Artificial Reef ProgramMDMR
Sportfish Restoration Coordination in Coastal MSMDMR
Shellfish Sanitation Compliance ProgramMDMR
Off-Bottom Oyster Aquaculture Program – Phase IIMDMR
Mandatory Training for the Seafood IndustryMDMR
Hydrological MonitoringMDMR
Monitoring MS Marine ResourcesMDMR
Marine Fisheries AdministrationMDMR
LymanMDMR
MDMR Public Affairs Outreach ProgramMDMR
Civil Air PatrolMDMR
Derelict VesselsMDMR
Human ResourcesMDMR
Seafood MarketingMDMR
Marine Patrol – JettiesMDMR
Bay St. Louis Oyster Brood StockThe Nature Conservancy
IMMS Public Education and Outreach ProgramIMMS
GOMAMDMR
Bayou LaCroix Ward 6 Boat Launch City of Bay St. Louis
Kuhn Street Boat Launch City of Biloxi
Causeway Park Floating Dock Project City of Biloxi
Eagle Point Park Development City of Biloxi
Hiller Park Boat Launch City of Biloxi
D’Iberville Working Waterfront Harbor/Marina City of D’Iberville
Diamondhead Noma Drive Public Access Improvements City of Diamondhead
Mary Walker Bayou Parks Project City of Gautier
Shepard State Park Upgrades City of Gautier
Courthouse Road Boat Launch Maintenance Dredge City of Gulfport
Bernard Bayou James Hill Park Site Improvements City of Gulfport
Long Beach Harbor Improvements City of Long Beach
Long Beach Pavilion, Harbor and Volleyball Area City of Long Beach
Sunset Pier and Sidewalk Extension City of Moss Point
East Beach Accessibility – Phase II City of Ocean Springs
Improvements to River Parks Piers City of Pascagoula
West Small Craft Harbor City of Pass Christian
Boat Launch and Marina Planning Assistance City of Waveland
Clermont Harbor Pier Expansion Hancock County
Race Track Road Boat Launch Jackson County BOS
Maritime Classroom Lynn Meadows
Marine Patrol MDMR
Estuarine Education Center Comfort Station and Area Reclamation MGCCC
Ocean Springs Sidewalk Project Ocean Springs MS
Seafood Museum Hurrican Zeta Schooner Pier Repair Seafood Museum
MS Coastal Map SMPD
Marine Education Center Pier and Kayak USM

CONTACT THE TIDELANDS OFFICE