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Land and Water Conservation Fund

The Land and Water Conservation Fund is not accepting new projects at this time.

The Land and Water Conservation Fund Program (LWCF) became effective in January 1965 to create parks and open spaces, protect wilderness and forests, and provide outdoor recreation opportunities. Funds are derived from federal recreation fees, Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) revenues from leasing oil and gas sites in coastal waters, federal surplus real property sales, and a portion of federal motorboat fuel taxes. Funds are apportioned to federal agencies, and to the 50 states and 6 territories through the U.S. Department of the Interior National Park Service (NPS). In Vermont, LWCF is administered by the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation. LWCF grants provide up to 50% matching assistance to the state and local governments.

Project applications are scored and ranked by a 5-member project application ranking committee following the Open Project Selection Process (OPSP) using established criteria. Resulting recommendations are reviewed and approved by the ranking committee. All applications must meet an identified need within the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP) and address local and regional needs. Municipalities must agree to dedicate the park or area where the project is located for public outdoor recreational use in perpetuity. In addition, the grantee must also agree to develop, operate and maintain the development to acceptable National Park Service (NPS) standards for public outdoor recreation. Grants are subject to approval by the National Park Service (NPS). 

Recordings from Past Information Meetings

Application Requirements

Who is Eligible

Municipal entities and state agencies only (e.g. towns, cities, school districts, water districts, park districts, etc.)

Eligible Projects

Acquisition of land for parks and public outdoor recreation, or development of new facilities and/or renovation of existing facilities for outdoor recreation.


Contact Information

For more information about the Land and Water Conservation Fund please e-mail the Recreation Grants administration team at Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation: ANR.FPRRecreationGrants@Vermont.Gov

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