CLCC and CT DEEP awarded more than $6.7 million
This partnership establishes a coordinated process by which land trust applicants to DEEP’s Open Space and Watershed Land Acquisition Grant Program (OSWA) may apply to the federal Agricultural Land Easement (ALE) program as a source of match funds. CCPP has been awarded more than $6.7 million by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Administered by CLCC, the program components include technical support from the Connecticut Farmland Trust and Northwest Connecticut Land Conservancy for land trusts applying to ALE for matching funds and a grant program to provide financial assistance to land trusts for due diligence and transaction costs. The five-year program is targeted to commence in late 2022.
This exciting news could not have come at a better time of challenge and opportunity for Connecticut’s land trusts:
The nation has committed to protecting 30 percent of its land and ocean areas by 2030 (30×30). The Connecticut Council on Environmental Quality reported that Connecticut’s land conservation efforts are not nearly on pace to achieve its goal. The public’s need for equitable access to the outdoors has never been more important and impactful.
This partnership comes at a time when the Connecticut legislature is considering numerous proposals to invest in programs (like OSWA) and legislation (like HB 6441) that are essential to maximizing ALE and other federal dollars.
Against this urgent backdrop, we look forward to launching the Connecticut Conservation Partnership Program to leverage critical federal match dollars for more land trusts to pursue local, regional, and statewide land conservation projects that protect our environment, public health, and economic well-being in municipalities across Connecticut.
P.S. Two other Connecticut projects also received RCPP funding, bringing more good news to land trusts and farmers. Read more here »