The Rensselaer Land Trust has begun a new era of resource protection for our county as a modern land trust. We are initiating a $3 Million Capital Campaign to expand and accelerate our efforts to place conservation easements on critical lands. Our efforts need to be proactive in watershed protection before our water quality suffers. Rensselaer County residents have the privilege of drinking clean water from local sources at a very modest cost. Some neighboring counties are obtaining their water from the Hudson River. Protecting watersheds that feed the Hudson can also help the Hudson become a cleaner river. Let's keep our water clean!
There are three key areas our $3 million campaign will underwrite:
$600,000 for Professional Staff
The benefit of professional staff is evidenced by the great success our neighboring land trusts have achieved in their respective counties: Columbia Land Conservancy, Saratoga PLAN and Washington County's ASA. As a starting point, Rensselaer Land Trust needs to hire three full-time staff: an executive director, a director of land stewardship and a development officer.
$400,000 for Stewardship and Legal Defense
As we have researched the best practices of land trusts across the nation, we have found the need to shore up our funds for stewardship and legal defense. So far, we have been fortunate to deal with first generation property owners who truly care about our natural resources. In the future, we must have secure funding to protect the land against legal challenges and steward the land "in perpetuity" in the face of a changing landscape.
$2,000,000 for Land Acquisition
The amount of land we steward is a very small percentage of what needs to be protected. Rensselaer Land Trust needs to step up the pace by identifying larger areas of interest and partnering with others to secure our future.
Significant conservation efforts require significant funding! Some of our members are joining our new "Watershed Circle" by giving $3,000 or more each year, though every donation makes a difference. They are forming the backbone of a growing campaign.
For more information about our capital campaign and how you can be a "Watershed Circle" donor, please contact us at email@example.com.