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Landscape Partnership Grant

Grants to Massachusetts Nonprofits and Agencies
to Acquire Land for Conservation Purposes

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

05/10/21 3:00 PM Receipt


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Grants to Massachusetts nonprofit organizations and government agencies to acquire and protect large blocks of land for conservation purposes. Funding may be used for the purchase of a conservation restriction, the purchase of an agricultural preservation restriction, the purchase of a watershed preservation restriction, the construction of a park or playground, or the purchase of land in fee simple for conservation, forestry, agricultural, or water supply purposes.

Proposals Sought For: Acquisition of property interests in large, unique, unfragmented conservation and working lands, in single or multiple parcels, by two or more entities acting in cooperation. 

Overview and Goals: In furtherance of the Baker Administration’s environmental, economic, and climate change resiliency goals, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) protects, conserves, and restores the biodiversity and natural resources of the Commonwealth. To fulfill this mission, Kathleen A. Theoharides, Secretary of EEA, is making available funding for the FY 2021 Landscape Partnership Grant Program.

This program advances the large-scale connectivity of conservation lands that is necessary to sustain the integrity and resilience of ecosystems and the viability of local farm and forest economies. Its purpose is to facilitate complex large-acreage projects, increase the leveraging of state financial investments, expand partnerships among federal, state, municipal, and non-profit entities, enhance the stewardship of conservation land, and expand public outdoor recreational opportunities. The program provides funding to assist municipal, state, federal, and non-profit partners, acting in cooperation, in acquiring interests in lands suitable for conservation purposes, including undeveloped lands, farms and forests, water supply lands, unique ecosystems, rare species habitats, and restored lands. The grant is particularly intended to enable projects that stretch beyond the scope of other state land grant programs and standard spheres of operation. The FY 21 Landscape Partnership Grant Program also supports the Governor Baker’s Executive Order 569, which calls for state government to adapt to climate change and build a more resilient Commonwealth, by including resiliency criteria in its rating system and incorporating priority projects from EEA’s Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness program.

Eligible Projects: Purchase of interests in a minimum of 500 acres of land through fee simple acquisition, conservation restriction (CR), agricultural preservation restriction (APR), watershed preservation restriction (WPR). At least 500 acres of the project’s parcels must be contiguous, or directly linked by other permanently protected land. See further detail on eligible projects in section 2B. In conjunction with an acquisition of 500 or more acres, limited funding is also available to small municipalities with population of 6,000 or less for the development of a local park or playground or for partners to develop forest carbon credit projects to support forest conservation.

For further information on eligible projects, see the following link:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 145233

Estimated Size of Grant:

Maximum Award: $1,250,000

Term of Contract:

The contract period will begin on the date of contract execution or a specified later date. Contracts issued pursuant to this BID must expend 100% of costs associated with the approved project on or before the end of the fiscal year (June 30) for which the contract is awarded.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

All applications must include at least two eligible project partners, representing at least two of the following eligible applicant categories:
- Municipality, acting through its Conservation Commission, or department of public works;
- Nonprofit, non-municipal public water supplier or fire district;
- Nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization formed for one of the purposes described in M.G.L. c. 180 §4;
- Government agency, including the Massachusetts Department of Fish and Game (DFG), Department of Agricultural Resources (DAR), and Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR). The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (DOT) may be a partner solely in the capacity of completing infrastructure projects to restore or increase connectivity to conservation land; DOT is not eligible to receive funding for, or use as match the value of, real property acquisition. Federal agencies within the US Department of the Interior (USDOI) or US Department of Agriculture (USDA) are eligible partners but may not receive reimbursement funding through this program.
- Municipal park and recreation department or board of selectmen acting as such, in towns with a resident population in 2010 of 6,000 or below, are eligible to receive contracts under this grant program for the development of a local park or playground only. Only municipalities in which project parcels are located are eligible to receive funding for parks or playgrounds.
- Municipal planning commission, or board of selectmen/city council acting as such, is an eligible partner and may receive contracts under this grant program for development of NRPZ/OSD or other conservation planning only. They may not purchase or hold property interests as a result of this program.

The two primary project partners must have a significant involvement in the project, involving financial contributions, retention of property interests, and/or long-term stewardship commitments.

For ineligible projects costs, see the following link:

Pre-proposal Conference:

An information session will be held at 2:00 pm on Thursday, April 1, 2021 through webinar. Please email Nathaniel Thomas at the email address listed in Contact Information below to register by Monday March 29, 2021 and receive a link to the session.

Pre-Application Information:

All applications must be received by DCS by 3 p.m. on Monday, May 10, 2021.

If your project is selected, additional documentation is needed to complete the grant process. This documentation is listed in the application packet. Municipalities will also need to vote to appropriate the necessary funds.

Applicants selected to receive grant funding must document the use of funds from other sources comprising at least 50% of total project costs.

Multiple applications will be accepted from the same entity. Projects including the municipality/municipalities in which the project is located as partners are especially encouraged.

How to Apply:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Submit one electronic copy of the application via email or file hosting service to:

AND mail one original copy of the application to:

Nathaniel Thomas
ENV 21 DCS 11
Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
100 Cambridge St
Suite 900
Boston, MA 02114

(617) 626-1187

Funding or Pin Number:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Massachusetts

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