COLT’s weekly land trust news
April 25th, 2016
Warm greetings to everyone,
The OWEB board will meet in LaGrande tomorrow (Tuesday) and Wednesday. Their April board meeting is when they make their land acquisition / easement funding decisions. According to their recent staff reports (found here), OWEB staff is recommending funding two land trust projects: Southern Oregon Land Conservancy’s Rogue River Preserve, and Pacific Forest Trust’s Mountcrest Working Forest Conservation Easement. These two projects are requesting $2.34 million in total of OWEB’s $6.5 million dedicated for acquisitions for the 2015-17 biennium.
COLT’s Kelley Beamer will be attending the OWEB board meeting to provide the board with an update on land trust activity. At COLT’s upcoming board meeting this week (April 29th), we will have time on the agenda to talk about OWEB, the application process, and to understand land trust demand for these funds so we can collective better utilize this stateside source of acquisition dollars.
On another note, the US Senate last passed past the Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2016 by a vote of 85-12, which includes permanent reauthorization for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (NYT article on the bill). Both Oregon Senators voted in favor of the bill. This is a big step forward to reach make LWCF permanent. We understand that the bill will now go into conference with the House version that was passed last year. As always, we’ll keep you apprised as we know more.
Any thanks the land trust community can send along to Sens. Wyden and Merkley for their continued support of LWCF would be appreciated.
Now on to this week’s news and more.
All the very best,
P.S. If you haven’t already, please let me know if you’ll be coming to the board meeting on Friday. Thank you!