How much funding is available?

Since 2008, grant funds have been generated by a $25 fee on four different kinds of documents recorded at registries of deeds all around the state, so are related to the ups and downs of the real estate market.  Since fiscal year 2021, the budget has included $5,000,000 for LCHIP grants.

Who can apply for LCHIP funding?

Towns, cities and counties (political subdivisions of the state) and qualified not-for-profit organizations are eligible to apply for funding from LCHIP.

How can a municipality/non-profit apply for funding?

Potential applicants should review the program specific information under the “Grant Programs” tab to learn about the grant process.

Who decides which projects get funded?

Grant applications are reviewed by the LCHIP staff and professional Review Panels. The LCHIP Board of Directors makes the final decisions on all grant funding. The 18-member Board of Directors includes eight members of the public appointed by the Governor and Council, two state Senators, two state Representatives, and the heads or designees of the six relevant state agencies: Department of Natural and Cultural Resources’ Division of Historical Resources and Division of Forests and Lands; Department of Environmental Services; Fish and Game Department; Office of Strategic Initiatives; and the Department of Agriculture, Markets and Food.

Which projects get funded?

LCHIP grants are awarded to land conservation and historic preservation projects in large and small communities all over the state. LCHIP's enabling legislation (RSA 227-M) establishes criteria that guide the LCHIP Board of Directors in making grant award decisions.

How long does it take to complete an average project?

Every project is different. Land conservation projects are allowed eighteen months from grant award to closing, while historic preservation projects are allowed twenty-four months.

How does LCHIP pay for its administration?

LCHIP receives up to $200,000 a year from the conservation license plate program ("Moose Plates") which supports the program's administrative costs. The remaining costs are covered by interest on bank accounts and a small percent of each grant awarded.

How do LCHIP grants benefit the economy of the State?

For every $1 of grant funds invested in a project, project proponents raise nearly $5 from other sources to match it. That far exceeds the required 50% match. Since 2001 LCHIP has committed over $54 million to projects with more than $312 million invested in those projects overall. Bringing all that new money into communities strengthens the local economy. LCHIP projects also generate on average more than a hundred jobs per grant round and contribute wages to people working in the communities.

How much funding is really needed to have an effective Program?

The Land and Community Heritage Commission that recommended the creation of LCHIP in 1999 determined a funding level of $12 million per year was needed to have a meaningful program. This amount has never been available. Demand for funding continues to exceed the amount available.

Why is state funding important?

Official state recognition through LCHIP grant awards adds to the visibility and importance of the project and encourages other funders to help support the project. This often allows the applicants to raise much more than the 50% match the program requires.

Why is this program a priority at a time of economic challenges?

The historic and natural resources that are protected and conserved through LCHIP grants are cornerstones of the New Hampshire Advantage, contributing to both the quality of life and the economic and environmental well-being of the people of the state. It is critically important to continue to invest in these resources that protect the character and values of New Hampshire. As time passes, both the value and the cost of protecting these resources will increase.

How Can I Learn More?

See other parts of our website or call the LCHIP office at 603-224-4113.