March 28, 2019

Land Conservation Funding in Danger! Your Voice is Needed!

We applaud Governor DeSantis and the Florida Legislature for their strong commitment to fix Florida’s water quality problems. We strongly believe that an approach to address blue-green algae blooms and red tide must also begin at the source, by protecting landscapes that can hold and clean water before it flows into our rivers and coastal estuaries Currently there is 45 Million in the Senate budget for Florida Forever and ZERO for Rural and Family Lands Protection Program (RFLPP). The House has 20...

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March 13, 2019

NRCS Conservation Easement Programs: Accepting Applications until April 25th!!

The application cycle for NRCS Conservation Easement Programs is still open. NRCS accepts ACEP applications on a continuous basis, but funding selections are typically made once a year. Please submit your applications by April 25thto be considered for this year’s funding!   For general questions on NRCS conservation easements please contact: Roney Gutierrez Roney.Gutierrez@fl.usda.gov 352-338-9502 If you are interested in pursuing a Wetland Reserve Easement (WRE) please contact: Crenel Francis Crenel.francis@fl.usda.gov  352-338-9508 If you are interested in the Agricultural Land Easement Program (ALE), or...

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March 12, 2019

Florida Ranchlands: Protecting Our Watersheds

Simple, Efficient and Effective Land conservation is essential for achieving watershed protection goals. Protecting high-quality habitat means CATCHING and KEEPING rain right where it falls and prevents water from rapidly running off into our estuaries and other water bodies. Land conservation doesn’t require pumping or building infrastructure. It is Simple, Efficient and Effective! Florida Ranchlands Hold and Filter Water Cattle ranches are a primary (and low intensity) rural land use in the watersheds of southern Florida; they provide essential wildlife habitat and...

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January 25, 2019

NRCS Conservation Easement Programs Update: 1/25/2019

The application cycle for funding NRCS Conservation Easement Programs is still open. NRCS accepts Conservation Easement applications on a continuous basis (please note that program requirements and forms are subject to change as guidance is provided for implementation of the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018). For general questions on NRCS conservation easements please contact: Roney Gutierrez Roney.Gutierrez@fl.usda.gov 352-338-9502 If you are interested in pursuing a Wetland Reserve Easement (WRE) please contact: Crenel Francis Crenel.francis@fl.usda.gov (352) 338-9508 If you are interested in the...

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December 18, 2018

Land Conservation and our Water Resources

The Florida Conservation Group believes in a holistic approach to addressing our water resource issues. Our waterways have issues because our watersheds have issues. We focus on addressing the underlying problems, namely PROTECTING and REHYDRATING our watersheds. Focusing on incentive-based solutions, and working with private landowners is critical to our water quality. Florida's ranchlands can be part of the solution in an overall strategy to address our water issues. FCG's work in protecting our water resources in Florida rural landscapes includes (not...

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October 5, 2018

Preserving Old Florida

  “People don’t come to Florida to see a subdivision, they want to see green space. My goal is to encourage other ranchers to acquire easements to preserve this land for the future. We are losing our state.” –Cary Lightsey Are you a private landowner interested in a conservation easement? Wetland Reserve Easements provide financial and technical assistance to ranchers and farmers to protect and restore wetlands. Agricultural land easements provide funds to partners, such as state and local governments, Indian tribes...

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February 26, 2018

Florida’s Land Conservation Programs

Florida Conservation Group (FCG) advocates on behalf of landowners from around the state for Rural and Family Lands and Florida Forever funding. These programs protect our water and wildlife for future generations. FCG has teamed with the Florida Cattlemen’s Association to ask our legislature to invest in natural and agricultural Florida and fund these programs. 2019 Budget Request Provide $100 million in funds for the Rural and Family Lands Protection Program Restore $100 million in funding for Florida Forever conservation easement projects...

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February 2, 2018

Landowner Advocacy for Land Conservation Programs

  Florida Conservation Group advocates on behalf of landowners from around the state for Rural and Family Lands and Florida Forever funding. These programs protect our water and wildlife for future generations. We've teamed with the Florida Cattlemen’s Association to ask our legislature to invest in natural and agricultural Florida and fund these programs. Contact us for more info: info@floridaconserve.org   Rural and Family Lands Protection Program (RFLPP) Agricultural Conservation Easement Program under Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. RFLPP’s primary...

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February 2, 2018

Florida Forever and Rural and Family Lands Protection Program

RFLPP and Florida Forever Conservation Easements are critical to the health of the landscape; they both protect water quality and supply for urban areas, maintain our agricultural economy,  and protect Florida’s tourist economy.    

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February 2, 2018

Conservation Planning

We engage in sound science-based conservation planning. There are many land conservation programs and we are very experienced in assisting landowners to identify and work with the appropriate programs. Our expertise includes both the latest conservation science and policy and program expertise. We are experts in identifying ecological priorities on a local, state and federal level, and individual properties based on the ecological attributes established as national, state, and regional conservation priorities. We are also experts on federal listed species and other...

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November 14, 2017

Florida’s Conservation Programs

Funding our state land conservation programs -- Florida Forever and Rural and Family Lands Protection Program (RFLPP) – is crucial to the future of Florida and a sound economic decision. Investing in these programs is the most cost-effective way to protect our water and natural resources.   Background Rural and Family Lands Protection Program (RFLPP) Agricultural Conservation Easement Program under Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. RFLPP’s primary mission is the protection of agricultural lands. Acres enrolled in Rural and Family...

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October 17, 2017

Conservation Easement on Corona Ranch Approved by Governor and Cabinet

The Florida Conservation Group (FCG) is thankful to the Governor and Cabinet for approving a new 2500-acre conservation easement under the Rural and family Lands Protection Program. The Corona Ranch conservation easement is located in the Everglades Headwaters, just a stones throw from the Kissimmee River. We are grateful to our partners: the Corona Family, Audubon of Florida and the National Wildlife Refuge Association for all of their efforts to protect this ecologically valuable property. The Corona Ranch plays a critical role...

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March 29, 2017

Statement from the Florida Conservation Group on The Rural and Family Lands Protection Program and Florida Forever Funding

Florida's agricultural landowners are dismayed at the lack of support by the legislature for Florida’s land conservation programs. The House has not included funding for the Rural and Family Lands Protection Program (RFLPP) or funding for Florida Forever land protection projects in their proposed budget. The Senate has proposed zero funding for RFLPP and only 15 Million for Florida Forever land protection projects. The Florida Conservation Group represents well over a million acres of private lands from north to south Florida. As...

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