The Lake George Land Conservancy (LGLC) was awarded a $40,000 grant from the 2017 Conservation Partnership Program, administered by the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the Land Trust Alliance.
The LGLC was one of 58 nonprofit land trusts across New York State to receive grants, totaling $1.8 million.
The grant funds will be used toward the cost of protecting a 72-acre beaver pond in Putnam, purchased by the LGLC in 2016. The property’s extensive wetlands are crucial for protecting the water quality of Lake George as well as provide high quality habitat for wildlife and migratory avian species.
Officials said the grants will further regional economic development goals by strengthening partnerships with local and state governments and advancing locally supported efforts to protect working farms, enhance public access and recreation opportunities, and conserve private lands prioritized in the state’s Open Space Conservation Plan and state wildlife action plan. Land trusts will also apply grant funds to prepare for national accreditation, supporting New York land trust commitments to rigorous national standards for nonprofit governance and organizational excellence.
Officials said the land is also part of the LGLC’s overall plan to expand the existing trail system to connect the Gull Bay Preserve and Last Great Shoreline to the Anthony’s Nose Preserve and beyond.
“We are once again grateful to the Land Trust Alliance and the DEC for supporting our efforts to protect Lake George through the Conservation Partnership Program,” said LGLC Executive Director Jamie Brown. “Protecting ponds and wetlands such as these in Putnam are crucial to keeping the renowned waters of Lake George clean and beautiful.”
Brown said the program has provided critical funds for many land trusts statewide, enabling the protection of important farm lands, forests and water resources throughout the state.
In April, DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos announced $1.8 million in Conservation Partnership Program grants for 58 nonprofit land trusts across the state. The grants, funded through New York’s Environmental Protection Fund (EPF), will leverage an additional $1.5 million in private and local funding to support projects that will protect farmland, wildlife habitat, and water quality, enhance public access for outdoor recreation, and conserve priority open space areas critical for community health, tourism and regional economic development.
“Through partnerships with local land trusts, the Environmental Protection Fund provides critical support for open space programs across the state,” said Seggos. “These grants help local land trusts support our work to protect New York’s peerless waters, lands, and habitats and preserve our state’s natural resources, while leveraging even more resources communities can put to good use protecting these irreplaceable assets.”
The Land Trust Alliance administers the Conservation Partnership Program in coordination with DEC. The 14th round of Conservation Partnership Program grants will help local land trusts sustain and expand community and landowner outreach initiatives and develop an array of land conservation, stewardship, and education programs.
Grant awards ranged from $4,700 to $75,000. Among the 58 different land trusts awarded grants were several local organizations based in the Mid-Hudson Valley Region. In all, 18 grants totaling $444,700 were awarded to organizations in the Mid-Hudson Valley region.