Baker-Polito Administration Announces $3.9 Million in Grants for Land Protection Projects


BOSTON – November 28, 2016 – The Baker-Polito Administration today announced more
than $3.9 million in grant awards to 13 communities to protect over 900 acres of
land through the Local Acquisitions for Natural Diversity (LAND) Grant Program. The
grant program, which is overseen by the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental
Affairs’ (EEA) Division of Conservation Services (DCS), seeks to address climate
change and protect biodiversity within the borders of the Commonwealth.

«Our administration continues to invest in open space and habitat conservation to
ensure that individuals and families across the Commonwealth have an opportunity to
experience everything our state’s natural environment has to offer,» said Governor
Charlie Baker. «Importantly, these visionary local projects will protect over 900
acres of beautiful open space and wildlife habitat for generations to come.»

«Municipal partnerships are very important to our administration, and we are
committed to continuing to work with local communities to expand and conserve public
land,» said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. «Critical funding like the Local
Acquisitions for Natural Diversity Grants will help ensure Massachusetts’ cities and
towns are able to protect natural environments for their residents to enjoy.»

The LAND Program (formerly the Self-Help Program) was established in 1961 to assist
municipal conservation commissions in acquiring land for natural resource protection
and passive outdoor recreation purposes. Any municipal conservation commission with
an approved Open Space and Recreation Plan is eligible to apply for this program.

«These important land protection projects will not only safeguard the natural
habitats within the communities receiving awards, but will also provide additional
outdoor recreational opportunities for the public,» said Energy and Environmental
Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. «Through the LAND program, we are able to provide
much-needed resources to communities who want to protect their local open spaces and
the environment.»

Below are the FY 2017 LAND Grant awardees:


Project Name

Project Description

Grant Award


Cole Property Acquisition

The Town of Amherst will acquire one of the few remaining unprotected pieces of land
within the base of the Mount Holyoke Range. The 10.4 acres of land consists of an
agricultural field, undeveloped woodland, forested wetland, vernal pools and two
perennial streams.



Ciesluk Forest Project

This project is an acquisition of 55 acres of woodland and wetland that straddle the
Nashua and SuAsCo Watersheds. This project would be an addition to the Garfield
Woods Reservation.



October Farm Riverfront

The Town of Concord will acquire 80 acres of land that has over a mile of frontage
along the Concord River and contains high-value upland and wetland habitats. The
property is a critical link to the 1,200-acre Estabrook Woods.



Ocean View Farm CR

The Town of Dartmouth will acquire 60 acres of land along the Allens Pond Estuary.
This project will be an addition to existing protected waterfront land.



Westford Street CR

The Town of Dunstable will acquire a conservation restriction over 87 acres of land
located on Westford Street that abuts the Ruth James English Wildlife Refuge. This
project will preserve several small hills and vales, ledge outcroppings, vernal
pools and 1,200 feet of Black Brook, a tributary of Salmon Brook.



Shallow Pond Woodland

The Town of Falmouth will acquire a conservation restriction over 69 acres of
woodland at Shallow Pond. This project will provide public access to a large pine
forest along the eastern shore of Shallow Pond.



Muddy Creek Headwaters

The Town of Harwich will acquire a conservation restriction over 17 acres of land
comprised of forest, meadow and wetland habitats, with significant shoreline at the
headwaters of Muddy Creek. This project will preserve a critical east-west corridor
for waterfowl traveling between Pleasant Bay and inland freshwater wetlands at the
head of the creek.


Hatfield & Williamsburg

Horse Mountain Conservation Area

This project consists of an acquisition of a 93-acre property located in both
Hatfield and Williamsburg. The property contains double peaks and the iconic
landmark ridgeline of Horse Mountain. This project will serve as a linking parcel
between Horse Mountain and the Terry Blunt Conservation Area.



Lion’s Head Peninsula

The Town of Middleborough will acquire 81 acres of land situated along the Nemasket
River, near the federally-designated Wild and Scenic Taunton River. This project
will create new opportunities for land and water-based recreation in the town.



Bogs and Turtles

The City of Northampton will acquire a 115-acre historic property that has been
mined for peat for years. This project will help preserve the history of the site
and high integrity wetland habitat, as well as provide outdoor education



Coppolino-Schlicke Property

This project is the first parcel in a significant conservation effort. The 56 acres
of land provides connectivity between the town’s Baldwin Hill Conservation Area and
adjacent Bearsden Recreation Area.



Eel River Acquisition

The Town of Plymouth will acquire 43 acres of woodland under Chapter 61, located
within walking distance to the Eel River. This project will protect the town’s



Conserve North Pond

This project will require a conservation restriction over 146 acres of land along
Congamond Lake to provide access to the shoreline and protect an aquifer that serves
several towns in the region.


«Protecting our open spaces and ensuring long term biodiversity in the Commonwealth
is critical to combating the ongoing effects of climate change,» said Senate
President Stan Rosenberg (D-Amherst). «These grants will guarantee that residents
will be able to enjoy our open spaces for many generations to come.»

«The Congamond Lakes and the surrounding land are vitally important to so many
residents in my district for clean drinking water, recreation, and much more,» said
State Senator Donald Humason (R-Westfield). «I have been proud to support the Town’s
effort to conserve a portion of this land, and I congratulate them on receiving
grant funding for this purpose. I appreciate the Baker Administration’s continued
support of local efforts to preserve open spaces in my district.»

«It was an honor to welcome Secretary Beaton to Southwick this fall and show him the
incredible opportunity with this parcel of land,» said State Representative Nicholas
Boldyga (R-Southwick). «Receiving this grant means a lot to the community of
Southwick and further reinforces Secretary Beaton’s, Governor Baker’s and Lieutenant
Governor Polito’s commitment to protect and preserve our natural resources here in
the Commonwealth.»

«The land of our state is precious and must be protected,» said Senate President Pro
Tempore Marc R. Pacheco (D-Taunton), founding chair of the Senate Committee on
Global Warming and Climate Change and vice chairman of the Joint Committee on
Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy. «These grants will preserve biodiversity
and allow our communities to safeguard their natural habitats. As citizens of the
world, we must be stewards of the environment; this is a wonderful opportunity for
citizens of the commonwealth to enjoy our natural habitats and all they have to

«Many people across the Commonwealth support preserving open space and various
habitats but when the measures taken expand access enabling more of our residents to
use and enjoy these valuable resources, it’s a win-win situation for everyone,» said
State Representative Susan Gifford (R-Wareham). «The Baker-Polito Administration
has made these programs a priority and our communities are the beneficiaries.»

«I want to thank the Baker-Polito Administration and Energy and Environmental
Affairs Secretary Beaton for this $400,000 grant to the town of Middleborough under
the Local Acquisitions for Natural Diversity Grant Program,» said State
Representative Keiko Orrall (R-Lakeville). «The funds will preserve 81 acres along
the Nemasket River River and will provide new access for recreational activities.
There is so much potential in our region and I am glad the Baker-Polito
Administration sees the beauty of our natural resources and is providing the support
needed for this project. Congratulations to town of Middleborough for successfully
pursuing this grant.»

For more information regarding the Local Acquisitions for Natural Diversity (LAND)
Program, please visit EEA’s