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Virginia Land Conservation Foundation Grant

Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (VDCR)


Grant amount: More than US $5,000

Anticipated deadline: The deadline for this grant has passed

Applicant type: Government Entity Nonprofit Indigenous Group College / University

Funding uses: Applied Project / Program

Location of project: Virginia

Location of residency: Virginia

Overview:

NOTE: VLCF will hold no grant round in 2018 because the state FY-19 budget has no grant funds for VLCF.

Few would argue that our commonwealth's natural and cultural resources are less than astonishing. With such unmatched resources, however, comes responsibility; the responsibility to conserve and protect these special places for future generations. That's where the Virginia Land Conservation Foundation (VLCF) comes in.

The purpose of the foundation is to provide state funding used to conserve certain categories of special land. Those categories are open spaces and parks, natural areas, historic areas, and farmland and forest preservation. The money comes from the Virginia Land Conservation Fund, which is managed by the foundation. A portion of the fund may be used for developing properties for public use. Grants used for acquisition are generally used only for current projects; only in exceptional cases - where considerable public benefit and compelling, unusual financial need and circumstances have been shown - might grants be made for already complete purchases. 

The foundation manages the Virginia Land Conservation Fund, which gets funding from the state's annual budget. One major function of the foundation is to make matching grants to holders and public bodies for purchasing fee simple title to or permanent conservation easements for the preservation of ecological, cultural or historical resources. 

The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation provides staff and administrative support. An Interagency Taskforce reviews and recommends grant applications to the Virginia Land Conservation Foundation. Grant awards are based on applications for 50 percent or less of total project costs pursuant to specific criteria defined in each category.

Categories

There are four application categories, and each has a particular set of criteria. See the Grant Manual for specific details. 

  • Open Spaces and Parks 
    • Applications for purchasing fee simple title to or a conservation easement on property for the development of public recreational and/or open space purposes. 
  • Natural Area Protection
    • Application for Natural Area funds may be made for projects that make a significant contribution to the protection of habitats for rare, threatened, or endangered plant or animal species or state-significant natural communities or natural areas of Virginia.  
  • Historic Area Preservation
    • Applications for purchasing fee simple title to or a conservation easement on property for the protection or preservation of historic, archaeological, cultural or historic landscape resources
  • Farmlands and Forest Preservation
    • While this is a single funding category, separate funding criteria have been developed for agricultural lands and for forestal lands.  
      • Agricultural (Farmlands):
        • Applications for purchasing fee simple title to or a conservation easement on property for the protection and preservation of agricultural lands
      • Forest Lands Criteria: 
        • Applications for purchasing fee simple title to or a conservation easement on property for the protection and preservation of working forest lands. 

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.

Eligibility:

  • Applications can be submitted by agencies, localities, public bodies, and registered (tax-exempt) nonprofit organizations in accordance with application procedures.

Ineligibility:

  • Applications for the acquisition of easements on lands currently protected for conservation purposes by the applicant are not eligible for VLCF Grant Program assistance.
  • Ineligible Projects:
    • Land/property that is in public ownership and protected for purposes consistent with this program cannot be acquired under this grant program. However, public land purchased in the two years prior to the commencement of the current grant round may be eligible as a match. 
    • Indirect costs (staff time or overhead) are not eligible match. 
    • Acquisition projects that include costs for maintenance and operation of lands and facilities; any such cost must be excluded from the total project costs and will not be considered as match contribution. 
    • Project proposals that are not site specific. 
    • General administrative funding of a Purchase of Development Rights (PDR) program is not eligible; however, funding is available for the purchase of development rights on a specific site or sites under PDR programs in accordance with the approved criteria.