RCCA Grant Program Assists Three Landowners
The Rapphannock County Conservation Alliance is pleased to announce it has made three awards totaling $9,000 from its inaugural Grant Program, which was created to assist landowners with up to 50% the administrative costs associated with donating a conservation easement.
“There are certain costs, such as fees for attorneys and appraisals, that our grant program will help pay for,” explains Jennifer Aldrich, RCCA president. “It’s a new program for us and we are very happy that these three land owners applied for the grant.”
The three properties total 350 acres and will be held by the Virginia Outdoors Foundation.
RCCA Pledges $20,000 to Farmland Preservation
In addition to the grant program, RCCA’s major beneficiary over the years has been the Rappahannock Farmland Preservation Program (FPP). In 2012 RCCA has pledged $20,000 from the proceeds of its Evening View Gala to the program bringing its total of gifts and pledges to the FPP to $140,000. The Rappahannock Farmland Preservation Program was established in 2004 to enable the County to purchase development rights from owners of working farms.
The program protects farmland with funds from private donors, which are then matched by the state. These funds are used to purchase development rights from farmers; however, these farmers will often partially donate a conservation easement, greatly reducing the cost of publicly funded acquisition. RCCA has helped to protect over 686 acres of farmland through this program.