Maine Appalachian Mountain Corridor Conservation Fund

Summary –  DeadlinesApplication Criteria –  Allowable CostsApplication Materials

Summary

The Maine Appalachian Mountain Corridor Conservation Fund provides financial assistance for land conservation projects in the 5 million-acre Maine Appalachian Mountain Corridor (see map). The fund supports transaction costs associated with donated (50% or more of value) conservation lands or easements. When generous, willing landowners wish to donate their land or an easement on their land for conservation, transaction costs such as surveys and legal fees can be an obstacle. This program provides funding for a conservation organization to cover all or a substantial portion of these costs. The funding is the result of a grant to the Maine Mountain Collaborative from the Jessie B. Cox Charitable Fund and the Boston Foundation.

The Grant Program is administered by the Maine Mountain Collaborative and is available for non-profit (501c3) organizations who are working to conserve forestland with notable ecological, recreational, or forestry values in the Maine Appalachian Mountain Corridor. The Collaborative expects to make 5-10 awards before June 2018 each up to $20,000 to cover the costs associated with donated or substantially donated (50% or more of value) conservation lands or easements. Preference will be for donations of more than 500 acres, but lands with exceptional values of a smaller size may be considered.  Funding cannot be applied to land or easement value.

The Maine Mountain Collaborative’s (MMC) mission is to accelerate land conservation in the Maine Appalachian Corridor using traditional and innovative financial strategies. The MMC is a coalition of statewide, regional, and national conservation and forestry organizations bringing a shared focus and innovative vision to accelerate the pace and scale of conservation in one of the world’s most intact temperate forests.

About Applying:

Deadlines and Timeline:

Before August 18, 2017: Phone conversation with Bryan Wentzell (bwentzell@mainemountaincollaborative.org) on your proposed project

September 8, 2017: Deadline for first round of applications

October 2, 2017: First round awards announced

October 2017-May 2018: Applications accepted on a rolling basis (first-come, first-serve) until funding is depleted, with 40-day turnaround for funding decisions.

Projects must meet these criteria to be considered:

  1. Landowner is donating at least 50% of the value of an easement or fee interest in the land for conservation.
  2. Project must be within or closely linked to the Maine Appalachian Mountain Corridor.
  3. Projects must permanently protect natural resource values and prohibit activities that would be contrary to the primary purpose of ecologically significant land protection. Well-managed timberlands will be considered under this program where the retention of ecological values and exemplary forest practices are ensured.
  4. Eligible grantees must be 501c(3) organizations.

The following factors will be weighed for grant decisions:

  1. Documentation of ecological, recreational, and forestry values, and support of local communities.
  2. Acreage (size) of the protected property (500 acres + preferred)
  3. Adjacency to conserved lands
  4. Landowner donation value (must be at least 50%)
  5. Matching funding secured for land value and/or transaction costs
  6. Likelihood of project closing (completion) within 12 months

Allowable Costs

Allowable costs are as follows: surveys, appraisals and appraisal reviews; attorney services to applicant related to the acquisition of easements; title searches, closing services, deed preparation, baseline documentation, mapping, easement and deed recording, initial management plans.

Non-Allowable Costs

Costs that will not be covered by the fund are as follows: payment for the value of the land or easement; applicant staff time/salaries; media, marketing and communications costs; on-site cleanup or mitigation, stewardship costs or endowment.

Application Materials: