For Natural Resource Applicants
Land conservation endeavors to protect high-quality lands from development. Lands can be conserved for a variety of purposes, including water quality protection, wildlife habitat protection and enhancement, preservation of scenic views and conservation of important forest and agricultural lands.
Land conservation helps to maintain the economic base of New Hampshire by ensuring the availability of an adequate long-term supply of forest products, and local food, as well as enhancing the tourism industry. Land conservation not only protects the irreplaceable physical resources of our natural environment, but also protects the vitality, quality of life, and sense of place that are so important in our communities and in our state.
The following information will guide you through the process of applying for an LCHIP natural resource grant and what you must do if you receive a grant. Click each step in the process to expand it for more information.
Applying for an LCHIP Natural Resource Grant
1. Determine if your organization is eligible
Organizations applying for LCHIP funding must be either a municipality or other political subdivision of the state of New Hampshire, or be a publicly supported nonprofit corporation exempt from federal income tax under section 501 (c) of the Internal Revenue code. Other interested parties may partner or work with an eligible organization or government entity but may not apply directly to the program.
Applicants are required to read and understand the Criteria Guidelines and Procedures (CGP), LCHIP’s operations manual. The CGP, plus NH RSA 227-M constitutes the complete guidance documents for all applicants.
Applicant organizations are required to adopt applicable sections of the Land Trust Alliance Standards and Practices.
2. Determine if your project is eligible
LCHIP grant funds may be used for certain costs directly associated with the acquisition of land or easements for the purpose of protecting ecologically significant lands, existing and potential public water supply lands, farmland, forestland, habitat for rare species or important wildlife, lands for recreation; shorelands, scenic areas and viewshed, and wetlands and associated uplands.
3. Attend a Grant Workshop
Attending a Grant Workshop is required for first time applicants and recommended for repeat applicants. If a member of your team has attended a LCHIP Grant Workshop in the past this requirement may be waived. If a new applicant is unable to attend the workshop, they must contat the LCHIP office and obtain a waiver from the Executive Director before the workshop takes place.
4. Submit an Intent to Apply Form
All organizations planning to submit a Project Proposal must submit a 1-page Intent to Apply Form to firstname.lastname@example.org prior to the submission deadline. Following submission, LCHIP staff will confirm organization and project eligibility.
NOTE: If your project impacts significant historic or cultural resource values please contact LCHIP prior to submitting this form.
5. Submit a Project Proposal
The LCHIP Project Proposal includes the application form and several required attachments. It is strongly recommended that anyone helping to create and assemble the Proposal read the entire instructions document carefully before beginning. The Checklist, Application, and Attachments must be completed according to the instructions, and submitted to LCHIP no later than 12:00 noon on the Application Due Date.
Grant Round 15 (2016) Natural Resource Project Application Instructions - FOR REFERENCE ONLY
Grant Round 15 (2016) Natural Resource Project Application - FOR REFERENCE ONLY
LCHIP’s Decision Making Process
Following submission of Proposals and a brief reading period, LCHIP staff schedule site visits to gain a better understanding of the particular resource or work proposed. Site visits typically take no more than 1 ½ - 2 hours, depending on the size of the property. Following the site visit period, a Review Panel comprised of experts in various elements of natural resource protection reviews all Proposals, creates recommendations, and provides input to the Board of Directors, who is responsible for all funding decisions.
If Your Proposal IS NOT Funded – What’s Next?
If a project does not receive LCHIP funding, the applicant will be invited to meet with LCHIP staff to discuss the project and the proposal. The goal of these meetings is to assist applicants to identify ways in which the project or proposal could be strengthened in the future. There is no prohibition against resubmitting an improved Proposal for the project in future LCHIP grant rounds.
If Your Proposal IS Funded - Accepting Your LCHIP Grant Award
To accept the LCHIP Award, an authorized representative of your organization must sign and return the Grant Award letter by the established deadline. Each organization receiving an LCHIP award is invited to send a representative to the LCHIP Grant Awards Announcement event, to be held shortly after funding decisions are made. Grant recipients are encouraged to publicize and celebrate their success at any time following this official announcement.
Managing your LCHIP Natural Resource Grant
6. Submit a Project Summary and Estimated Timeline
Once the grant award has been accepted, Grant Recipients are required to provide general project information and an estimated timeline outlining the anticipated progression of the project.
7. Project Agreement
Using the information contained in the Project Summary, LCHIP will then work with the Grant Recipient to develop a customized Project Agreement in accordance with NH RSA 227-M:17. The Project Agreement summarizes the grant award and conditions, project scope and structure, and the ongoing obligations of both the Grant Recipient and LCHIP. The Project Agreement may be revised as needed prior to the project closing. The final Project Agreement is recorded with the conveyance documents when the project is completed.
8. Deed Language Development
To avoid any costly or time-consuming misunderstandings, all Grant Recipients should familiarize themselves with the LCHIP’s deed language and due diligence requirements early in the process. Deed language requirements will be provided with the Project Agreement. Draft deed language may be submitted at any time following the completion of a Project Agreement. We recommend submitting draft deed language to LCHIP prior to sending it to other funders.
9. Submit Due Diligence Package
No less than four weeks prior to the anticipated closing date for the project, Grant Recipients must submit a complete Due Diligence Package to LCHIP for review and approval. Due Diligence materials may be submitted electronically via DropBox, Google Drive, or on a flash drive or memory stick. Hard copies only are not accepted.
Natural Resource Project Budget Form (Excel file)
10. Submit Final Project Documentation
Following the closing, several additional documents must be submitted to LCHIP. These include copies of the final recorded conveyance documents, hard copies of the final survey or plan, a photo of the LCHIP sign in place on the property, and documentation that shape files for the property have been submitted to NH GRANIT.
11. Ongoing Stewardship
An LCHIP grant award carries a continuing obligation to provide perpetual oversight and stewardship of the resource protected. This obligation includes annual monitoring and inspection of the property. Beginning in the year following closing, a report of this activity must be submitted to LCHIP on or before December 31. The model Natural Resource Monitoring Report includes all of the required elements: grant recipients may choose to use an alternative report form as long as all the required information is included.