NYSDEC announces a new Community Forest Conservation Grant Program. $1 million in grant funds will be available to municipalities for forest land acquisition to establish community forests. The grant program’s goal is to assist communities in the conservation of local forests to create opportunities for public access, help protect natural areas from development, and encourage sustainable management of forested lands.

Applicants will be able to request $50,000 to $300,000 and must provide a 10% cash match of the grant amount requested. This is a reimbursement grant and costs eligible for reimbursement will include, but are not limited to, purchase price, appraisal, survey, title search, tax service, recording fees, and attorney fees. Properties to be acquired must be ten or more contiguous acres in size, have forests on at least 75% of the acreage, be accessible to the public, and provide public benefits such as recreation opportunities, flood mitigation, wildlife habitat, clean water, and forest products.

Applications are due 2 p.m. on Wednesday, April 13. For more information about this grant, go to  https://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/124345.html.

A webinar about project eligibility and the application process will be held on Wednesday, February 2nd from 10am to 12pm. The webinar can be joined by visiting https://meetny.webex.com/meetny/j.php?MTID=m64f37891fe288b972576ea5c411234c7 and entering the password “wiVJ6S9hmE5” if required.

Please contact Molly Hassett, molly.hassett@dec.ny.gov with any questions on this grant opportunity.