YELLOW SPRINGS — The Tecumseh Land Trust’s “Jacoby Creek Partnership” proposal was selected for funding this week by the Natural Resource Conservation Service.
The award includes up to $1.44 million in federal funding for improving conservation practices and preserving farm and forest land in two sub watersheds of the (state and national) Scenic Little Miami River – Jacoby Creek and Yellow Springs Creek.
Twelve local and state partners will match at least this much value, through funding or expertise for the project, with the aim of improving water and habitat quality. The project period is five years, and the land trust will be contacting eligible landowners soon about potential benefits of the project for them.
NRCS selected a total of 91 Regional Conservation Partnership Projects for funding in 2018. NRCS plans to invest approximately $220 million in these projects all across the country. This program is a part of the Farm Bill, and emphasizes innovative and committed public-private partnerships that improve water quality.
Tecumseh Land Trust’s proposal, and the Jacoby partnership emerged after a critical piece of farm and natural land went to auction in the winter of 2017. The land trust, its supporters and the Village of Yellow Springs raised funds to work with potential “conservation buyers,” who would minimize commercial and residential development on the land by managing it permanently for agriculture and conservation purposes. Conservation buyers were found, among them Community Solutions, a local nonprofit. They secured the largest parcel of the property at auction, and committed to preserve at least 80 acres of the property through a permanent conservation easement.
Soon after the auction, the village and the land trust agreed that action was needed to protect as much as possible of the long desired “Jacoby Greenbelt” area, around the village, as soon as possible. The land trust invited other organizations to join the Jacoby Partnership Project, including The Nature Conservancy, Xylem/YSI and Central State University, the Greene County Soil and Water Conservation District, the Yellow Springs School District, Ohio EPA, Antioch College, and the Clean Ohio Local Agricultural Easement Purchase and Open Space programs. All eager to collaborate to demonstrate improved water quality in the watershed, and Community Solutions is offering their new property to be a demonstration site for best practices and stream restoration.
Tecumseh Land Trust is a local, member supported, nonprofit organization that has protected more than 26,000 acres and 42 stream miles in southwest Ohio. In addition to more than 150 farms, the land trust protected over 1000 acres in the Glen Helen Nature Preserve, also a part of the Jacoby Greenbelt.
“Our members, including the new contributors to the Jacoby Farm auction fund, make all our work possible,” says Krista Magaw, Tecumseh Land Trust executive director. “The love of the land and the water unites us. That and our desire to protect this bounty and beauty for the next generation.”
Visit www.tecumsehlandtrust.org to find out more.
Story courtesy of the Tecumseh Land Trust.