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Open Spaces Protection Grant

Grants to Iowa Private Conservation Organizations
for Land Acquisition and Outdoor Recreation

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) - Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP) Fund

Deadline Date:

08/15/18 4:30 PM


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Grants to Iowa private conservation organizations for the acquisition and development of lands for the purposes of habitat protection and outdoor recreation. In evaluating proposals, consideration will be given to public benefits, species protection, tourism and economic development potential, multiple use potential, geographic distribution, leveraged funds, and the quality of the public communication plan.

Open Space (28% of REAP funds) - This money is allocated to DNR for state acquisition and development of lands and waters. The Natural Resource Commission has set a policy that half this money be directed to land acquisition and half to facility developments.

One-tenth of this 28% is set aside to cost-share land acquisitions with private organizations. This program provides an excellent opportunity for private conservation organizations to help provide outdoor recreation opportunities and protect critical habitat. The DNR owns and manages the property that is jointly purchased on behalf of the public.

Project Selection Criteria:

The committee shall evaluate and rank the resource enhancement and protection (REAP) private cost–share grant applications, scoring each criteria from 1 to 10, low to high, and use the following multipliers for each criteria:

a. The committee shall use a multiplier of three for each of the following:

(1) Level of significance. The relative rarity of the natural resources found on the project site, including but not limited to native vegetation and the documented presence of species of greatest conservation need as defined by the Iowa Wildlife Action Plan as developed by the department and as may be amended from time-to-time, or other uncommonly occurring but native resources.

(2) Resource representation. The quality of the project site, including but not limited to the size and diversity of the project area and the vegetation and wildlife it supports.

(3) Level of threat. Specific factors and immediate threats to the project area that constitute urgency for acquisition and development, including but not limited to urban expansion, residential development, agricultural activities, or clearing.

(4) Relation to public land. The proximity to existing wildlife management areas, existing parks, and other public recreation or greenbelt areas already under public ownership and management.

(5) Relationship to relevant regional and statewide programs. A demonstrated relationship to the state comprehensive outdoor recreation plan, the Iowa open spaces protection plan or the county resource enhancement plan. The committee may evaluate other relevant local, state and federal plans at its discretion.

b. The committee shall use a multiplier of two for each of the following:

(1) Rare or unique species communities. The documented presence of species of greatest conservation need, as defined by the Iowa Wildlife Action Plan as developed by the department and as may be amended from time to time, in addition to 33.50.(5)”a”(1).

(2) Public benefits. A demonstrated benefit to the public, including but not limited to expanded recreational or educational opportunities and incorporation of land improvements that may have a positive impact on the ecosystem, such as bank stabilization, wetland development, or filter strips.

c. The committee shall use a multiplier of one for each of the following:

(1) Tourism and economic development potential. Impact on local tourism, including any enhancements to the economy in the vicinity of the project.

(2) Geographic distribution. Project site is located in a city or county that has not received a REAP grant.

(3) Multiple use potential. Project site provides more than one public use, e.g., the project provides hunting, fishing and hiking opportunities to the public.

(4) Additional funds. Level of funds obligated in excess of the minimum cost–share requirements.

(5) Quality of public communication plan. Project sponsor’s effort to inform and advise constituents and users about the importance of the proposed project, and plans to promote the proposed project to expected user groups.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 173505

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Grants are made to private conservation organizations.

Pre-Application Information:

The cost-share arrangement entails 75% of the acquisition costs coming from REAP and the other 25% coming from private contributions.

REAP Grant Applications will be submitted electronically. Simply email grant applications by August 15 at 4:30 PM.

The Review and Selection Day will be in mid-September at the Wallace Building at 502 E. 9th Street, Des Moines, 50319. Please check in at the front desk. Applicants are highly encouraged to attend this meeting to answer any questions the selection committee may have.

Contact Information:

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

Tammie Krausman, REAP Coordinator

Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Wallace State Office Building
Des Moines, IA 50319

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Iowa