Albany, NY – An important investment in New York's land trusts was announced today, by the state Department of Environmental Conservation and the Land Trust Alliance. Capital District Bureau Chief Dave Lucas reports.
State Legislature officials, leaders from DEC, the Department of Agriculture and Markets, Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and land trust representatives announced 65 grants totaling more than $1.4 million. The Conservation Partnership Program, supported by New York State's Environmental Protection Fund (EPF), will administer the grants to 47 land trusts across New York for open space preservation and to strengthen these community-based organizations. DEC Executive Deputy Commissioner Stuart Gruskin says "it's hard to find a smarter investment than land" - Since 2002, the Conservation Partnership Program has provided funding for more than 275 competitive grants to 67 different land trust organizations. The groups serve rural, suburban, and urban communities across the state. Land Trusts have helped conserve 36 million acres nationwide... To date, the program has leveraged over $10 million in private funds and helped protect more than 11,000 acres, including numerous areas prioritized in the New York State Open Space Plan. Since 2002, the state's Conservation Partnership Program has provided funding to 67 different land trust organizations serving rural, suburban, and urban communities across the state.