Each of the last 5 years, Maine has submitted two North American Wetland Conservation Act Grants (NAWCA) with the entire State as a focus area. The grants in total have ranged from $1M to $2M and so far Maine has been 100% successful in receiving funds. In recent rounds we have asked for and received around $2M distributed over 4-6 projects for acquisition costs only. A different land trust or State agency has taken the lead on each grant as the applicant (the applicant usually has the largest most expensive project and thus receives a larger portion of the funds). The applications are due in February and July. In 2023, MCHT will once again contract with Marty Anderson to write these large NAWCAs.
In early April, The Wetlands Coalition will meet to discuss any projects received and develop a project slate and we invite you to tell us about potential projects in your region. What qualifies as a good NAWCA project is pretty nuanced (they do need to have some wetlands and NAWCA loves bird habitat) but we now have an easy system of doing an initial assessment of those projects. Projects must close after the application is submitted in early July (you can be under P&S before submission). Funds will not be available until late 2023 or early to mid-2024 so you need to be able to upfront the acquisition costs or have a patient land owner who will enter into a longer Option to Purchase.
Because we have an experience grant writer, the amount of work required on your part to submit the grant is relatively small. You may be asked to pay for a portion of the grant writers time depending on the applicant and funding at the time. Receiving the money, like many grant programs, requires extra due diligence on your part including a Yellow Book appraisal.
If you have a project that you think might qualify, please submit a shapefile and this form, with as much of it filled out as you can, to Marty Anderson as soon as possible. The Committee meets on April 11th to discuss a possible July application.
If you have questions contact Betsy Ham at (207) 607-4589 or Bob DeForrest at (207) 801-4053.