RCD Financial Assistance Program
In 2017, the Department of Conservation awarded 59 grants to qualified Resource Conservation Districts (RCDs). Consistent with the CA Association of Resource Conservation Districts (CARCD) Vision and Standards, the purpose of this program was to help RCDs build capacity and increase effectiveness, which enhances resource conservation and management both locally and throughout the state.
Some notable examples of RCD achievements funded by the program:
Mendocino County RCD applied its $46,209 grant to expand a forest health program, formalize regional collaboration, join a growing RCD project tracking database, and obtain $4.3 million in additional grant funding for forest biomass projects, hazard tree removal, reforestation, creating fire adapted communities, and supporting the Mendocino Co Fire Safe Council.
Sierra RCD applied its $46,209 grant to develop new partnerships and outreach tools, increase its ability to provide support for local and regional efforts, complete a district carbon management plan, and obtain $789,000 in additional grant funding for a biomass utilization plant.
Coarsegold RCD applied its $46,209 grant to build a new website, recruit and train board members, develop new partnerships, and retrieve fallen and cut trees from private landowners to distribute firewood to disadvantaged community members and simultaneously reduce fire risk.
Yolo County RCD applied its $46,209 grant to develop local and regional collaborations with partners, increase its ability to provide support for local and regional efforts, submit 17 new project/grant proposals, and obtain $1 million in additional grant funding.
In total, $2,334,200 of grant funding provided through the program was leveraged to obtain $40,711,788 in additional funding for conservation projects!
California Farmland Conservancy Program (CFCP)
The California Farmland Conservancy Program (CFCP) funded easements on more than 58,000 acres* of the state's best agricultural land between 1996 and 2016.
This permanent conservation was accomplished at just under $2,990 per acre, with funds contributed by CFCP, federal, state, and local partners; as well as donations from landowners. These partnerships are helping to implement the conservation planning goals of California communities. CFCP's share of the total is just over $1,460 per acre.
Additionally, 39 planning grants enabled California land trusts to begin or expand their work in agricultural conservation. An average of just over $48,000 in CFCP funds was matched by another $24,000 per project. This work continues to pay dividends as land trusts gain experience in stewarding agricultural conservation easements.
* Completed easements include those which have closed escrow, completed reporting requirements, and have had all final associated costs paid.
A map depicting easements funded in each county (PDF) is also available.