Timing is Important!

Urban Play Park

The Division of Conservation Services grant programs are normally conducted on an annual cycle, unless a special round is announced by the Secretary.

Costs associated with any land purchased (or design and construction work completed) before a signed contract is received by the municipal applicant from DCS are ineligible for reimbursement.  Do not proceed with the project until you have a signed contract from DCS.  Award announcements are generally made on or about 120 days from the application deadline.  Keep in mind that this is an estimate and no award dates can be guaranteed.


FY17 Grant Round

  • Application release date: April 4, 2016
  • Grant workshops:
    • Date: Thursday, May 5, 2016, 11:00 am
      • Location: Department of Agricultural Resources offices at 101 University Drive, Suite C4, Amherst, MA
    • Date: Tuesday, May 10, 2016, 11:00 am
      • Location: Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs at 100 Cambridge St., 2nd Floor Conference Room D, Boston, MA
    • Workshops tend to run for one hour
  • End of Open Question Period: Wednesday, June 29, 2016
  • Application Deadlines:
    • Conservation Appraisal and Open Space Recreation Plans for Small Communities: rolling submission, not later than June 10, 2016
    • Conservation Partnership: July 18, 2016 at 3:00 pm
    • LAND and PARC: July 13, 2016 at 3:00 pm
  • Site inspections: to be completed by late August
  • Award announcements: approximately 120 days from application deadline (Conservation Appraisals for Small Communities funding is non-competitive and will be announced on a rolling basis)
  • Project completion:
    • Conservation Appraisal and Open Space and Recreation Plans for Small Communities: June 1, 2017 (the LAND application deadline)
    • LAND, Conservation Partnership, and some PARC projects: June 1, 2017
    • Other PARC projects: June 1, 2018

Each grant program:

Preserved Open Space
  • Is a reimbursement program requiring the applicant to raise, borrow or appropriate the total project cost, and then be reimbursed a portion of that cost by the grant
  • Requires a local investment and therefore only reimburses on a sliding scale to each municipality, from 52% to 70% of the total project cost up to a maximum grant limit set by the Secretary
  • Conservation Appraisal and Open Space Recreation Plans for Small Communities reimburses 80% of approved costs
  • Has regulations and guidance documents
  • Involves a competitive project selection system
  • Favors proposals that support the Secretary's focus as detailed in the grant workshop and in the BID


In order to be eligible for either PARC or LAND grants, your municipal Open Space and Recreation Plan must be up to date and approved, and there must be no current unresolved parkland conversion issues with EEA. To learn more about these items, please refer to the links below:

View the presentation from our last workshop for communities , Article 97 Policy pdf format of DCSarticle97.pdf


This information is provided by the Division of Conservation Services.