The required 1:1 match does not have to be cash; most often, match is in-kind, in the form of land value of other protected or restored lands in the project area. Previous conservation work is eligible as match if it falls within a two-year “look back” period, which starts January 1 of the calendar year two years prior to the current year. Eligible costs expected to be incurred during the two-year grant window can also serve as match.
Examples to illustrate how match works:
- $1 million grant sought to protect one 1,000-acre parcel costing $3M.
Total project acres: 1,000
Match = $2 million (cash)
- $1M grant sought to protect 1,000-acre parcel costing $1M. Match includes:
- “bargain sale” acquisition (full fee ownership) of a 500-acre parcel (a match parcel) which happened one year ago, for which $500k was paid, and $500k represented a donation by the owner)
- Donation of conservation easement by private landowner on another matching property (700-acre parcel, $950k value, plus $50k in due diligence costs by land trust), expected during the next year or two
Total project acres: 2,200
Match = $2 million (cash, in-kind easement value, bargain sale, due diligence costs), based on appraised values of grant tract, match tract, and match easement.