Hearing Set on Legislation to Increase State Support for LCHIP

Matt Leahy | February 26, 2019
Tower Hill Pond in Auburn, New Hampshire

The Manchester Water Works Project surrounding Tower Hill Pond in Auburn, NH has received wide-ranging and enthusiastic support from the local conservation commissions, through donations from generous donors, and grants from LCHIP, the Merrimack Conservation Partnership, and the Department of Environmental Services. Photo: Brian Hotz/Forest Society.

Senate Bill 74, which proposes to increase the number of grants the New Hampshire Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) can award to projects that conserve and preserve our most important natural, cultural and historic resources, will have its hearing on Tuesday, March 5, at 9:00 a.m. in State House, Room 103. As you may know, the source of LCHIP’s funding is a twenty-five dollar fee charged on four types of documents that are recorded at the County Registry Offices. In the current state budget, the fee supported approximately $3.5 million in grants.

The bill proposes to raise that fee by ten dollars starting on July 1, 2019. Estimates say the increase will bring in an additional $1.5 million for the program. 

If you have a story to share with members of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources about an LCHIP project, please contact them HERE and let them know how the program has impacted your community.

When you contact them, please highlight the following points:

  • Your connection to an LCHIP project.  For example, did you donate money or volunteer your time towards its completion?  Were you part of the planning effort?
  • The strong, local backing for the project. While LCHIP typically is one of the key pieces in any fundraising campaign, it is important to note how LCHIP leverages other sources of financial support.
  • How you believe the LCHIP-supported project has improved the quality of life in your community.
  • Over the last 10 years, 177 out of the 505 total applications received were not funded.  That figure indicates the demand and need for LCHIP continues, even 18 years after the Legislature established the program.
  • Most importantly, this interest in LCHIP shows how much the people of our state value our natural and historic resources and are committed to the protection of those resources. 

Click here to see all past LCHIP projects listed by Town.

Some of our recent LCHIP-supported projects include the Manchester Water Works Project in Auburn, Mt. Major in Alton, The Merrimack Riverfront in Hooksett, Powder Major's Forest in Madbury, Durham, and Lee, and Stillhouse Forest in Canterbury.