Monmouth County Municipal Open Space Grant Program
Grants to Monmouth County, New Jersey Municipalities for
Land Acquisition and Development
Land Acquisition and Development
Monmouth County Park System - Board of Chosen Freeholders
09/20/17 4:00 PM Postmarked or Delivered
Grants to Monmouth County, New Jersey municipalities to improve land for recreation and parks, and to acquire lands for open space preservation. Eligible open space acquisition projects are those that target lands that are significant local historic sites, lands identified in local open space preservation and recreation plans, or lands that function as important wildlife habitat.
The emphasis of the program will be placed on land acquisition, development of new recreational facilities, expansion or improvement of existing recreational opportunities, and new or innovative approaches to providing local access to open spaces or recreational activities. Additional priority will be given to State-designated Urban Aid Communities.
Acquisition funding will cover the purchase price of the title in fee-simple interest for land and structures, or the purchase price of public access easements for land. For development projects, the direct cost of facility construction, demolition, renovation, and/or stabilization are eligible. No indirect or soft costs are eligible including, but not limited to, professional and in-kind services. Any costs incurred prior to the filing of the application are considered ineligible; the issuance of a purchase order or the award of a contract constitutes the incurrence of costs.
All land acquisition projects must be for park, recreation, and open space purposes, including but not limited to the following:
- Waterfront lands adjacent to the ocean, ponds, lakes, streams, rivers, or reservoirs.
- Natural areas such as forested areas or watershed areas that may be used as wildlife conservation areas, scenic vistas, or other open space purposes.
- Lands to be used as park and recreational areas such as playgrounds, athletic fields, recreation centers, or areas for passive recreation.
- Lands that have significant cultural and/or historic features and structures.
A deed of open space easement from the applicant municipality to the County restricting the use of the project site to these purposes will be required as a condition of award.
County funding is limited to $250,000 per project.
The project must be completed within thirty months of the application selection.
Monmouth County municipalities are the only eligible applicants. The governing body must adopt a resolution authorizing the application. Municipalities may submit only one application per funding cycle. Both acquisition and development projects for park, recreation and open space purposes are eligible.
Municipalities are encouraged, however, to form partnerships with other public or nonprofit organizations to strengthen and enhance project proposals. The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders will enter into grant agreements with municipalities only.
The facility/property must be open to the general public.
Eligible Land Acquisitions - The applicant municipality must acquire a controlling interest in real property including but not limited to the following:
- Fee simple acquisition
- Purchase of Conservation Easement with public access
- Extinguishment of Development Rights
Ineligible Land Acquisitions:
- Purchase of lands that will have restricted public access unless full access is determined to be detrimental to the natural or historic resources found on the site.
- Planned future use that will have an adverse impact to environmental, scenic, or historic resources.
- Sites that are or will be used as a public road or right-of-way such as sidewalks unless intended exclusively for walking/biking trails or used for ingress and egress for a park and recreation facility.
- Parcels of land that have previously received funding through the Monmouth County Municipal Open Space Grant Program. This does not preclude additions to existing Park Sites.
- Any land already permanently preserved for recreation or conservation purposes.
- Any land currently owned by the Municipality not used and/or acquired for recreation or conservation purposes.
- Any land intended to satisfy the mitigation requirements of the New Jersey Green Acres Program procedural rules for disposal or diversion as set forth at N.J.A.C. 7:36-21 et. seq.
Acquisition of Structures:
- Applicant must agree to either maintain or demolish any structures on site. Demolition of structures that are listed on or eligible for the National or New Jersey Register of Historic Places is not permitted.
- Any facility to be retained must be used for public park and open space purposes only.
Acquisition of Public Access Easements:
Easements must provide public access to be eligible for funding.
At least one appraisal less than three years old and prepared by a New Jersey Green Acres Program approved appraiser must be included with the application. It is recommended that appraisals conform to the New Jersey Green Acres Program appraisal specifications that can be found on their website http://www.state.nj.us/dep/greenacres/. Applicants are encouraged to confirm project eligibility before incurring appraisal costs.
Allowable Project Costs for Acquisition:
For acquisition projects, the payable grant amount will be based on the appraised value or agreed to purchase price, whichever is less, for either the title in fee-simple interest for land and structures, the conservation easement with public access, or the extinguishment of development rights for the land. Project costs will not be allowed as set forth below under the heading “Disallowable Project Costs for Acquisition.”
Disallowable Project Costs for Acquisition - The following costs will not be covered with program funds and should be excluded from the total project cost used to determine the grant request amount:
- Legal fees
- Title Searches and Title Insurance
- Recording costs
- Engineering and/or surveys
- Environmental audits
- Building demolition, renovation and/or stabilization
- Administration or operation related to the project
- In-kind services including salaries or wages of employees of the applicant
- Owner/Tenant relocation
- Condemnation costs
- Any costs incurred prior to the submission of a complete application; the issuance of a purchase order shall constitute the incurrence of costs
Eligible Development and Redevelopment Projects:
All projects must be for park, recreation, and open space purposes. A deed of open space easement restricting the use of the project site to these purposes will be required as a condition of award. Building new facilities and improving existing facilities through demolition, renovation, and/or stabilization will be considered as eligible. All project sites must be owned by the applicant municipality or the municipality must hold a longterm lease for a term of at least 25 years beyond the grant award, or other instruments extending for substantially 25 years beyond the grant award where a third party governmental entity is also a party. In all cases the site must be under the control of the applicant municipality. When project sites are not owned in fee simple by the Municipality, additional agreements or covenants may be required. Fees for use of funded facilities are permissible. Applications for projects that diversify or expand recreation opportunities will be favored over applications that replace aged or substandard facilities or address issues of maintenance. Degree of public access will also be considered.
Ineligible Development and Redevelopment Projects - The following conditions will deem projects as ineligible:
- Projects that have restricted public access, unless full access is determined to be detrimental to natural resources.
- Activities that will cause adverse impacts to environmental, scenic, historic or preexisting park resources.
- Sites that are or will be used as a public road or right-of-way such as sidewalks unless it is intended exclusively for walking/biking trails or ingress or egress for a park and recreation facility.
- Projects or project elements that have previously received funding through the Monmouth County Municipal Open Space Grant Program, unless originally identified as a multi-phase project.
Allowable Project Costs for Development and Redevelopment Projects:
For development and redevelopment projects, the allowable grant amount will be based on the actual construction costs of the approved project elements. Project costs will not be allowed as set forth below under the heading “Disallowable Project Costs for Development and Redevelopment Projects.”
Disallowable Project Costs for Development and Redevelopment Projects - The following costs will not be covered with program funds and should be excluded from the total project cost used to determine the grant request amount:
- Operational and maintenance costs for facilities or projects.
- Equipment – e.g., trucks, tractors, boats, tables, chairs or other movable, expendable, or disposable items. (Fixtures will be allowed if determined to be a necessary component of the facility.)
- Soft costs – e.g., engineering, architectural, surveys, permits, environmental audits, administration or operation related to the project, in-kind services including salaries or wages of employees of the applicant.
- Contingencies in excess of 10% of proposed project budget.
- Any costs incurred prior to the submission of the application; the issuance of a purchase order or the award of a contract shall constitute the incurrence of costs.
Applicants are encouraged to schedule a pre-application meeting with the Program Administrator to identify any deficiencies or issues of eligibility.
Monmouth County will fund up to 50% of eligible project costs. In State-designated Urban Aid Communities, the County will increase its maximum share to 75%.
April/May – Application packages sent to Mayors, Municipal Administrators & Clerks
September – Applications due (2017 deadline is September 20)
December – Funding recommendations to Freeholders
December/January – Freeholders announce selected projects
January – June – Grant Agreements executed
Applications for 2017 funding must be postmarked or delivered to the Acquisition and Design Office of the Monmouth County Park System at Thompson Park in Lincroft on or before 4pm on Wednesday, September 20, 2017.
Disbursement of Grant: No grant funds will be disbursed prior to the execution of the grant agreement between the County and the municipality. Grant funds will be disbursed only after all required documentation has been submitted to the County and found to be acceptable.
Please Note: County funds will be provided on a reimbursement basis after all conditions are satisfied.
Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.
Questions and correspondence should be addressed to the Monmouth County Park System, Acquisition and Design Office, Attn: Open Space Grant Program, 805 Newman Springs Road, Lincroft, NJ 07738.
For additional information, please call 732-842-4000, ext 4472 or email email@example.com.
USA: New Jersey: Monmouth County
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