View of of willows and boulders along the James River at Pumphouse Park in Richmond VA.

CRLC Seeks Renewal of National Accreditation: Public Notice is Opportunity to Comment

Richmond, VA – The Capital Region Land Conservancy (CRLC), Richmond’s only local land trust, reached a major milestone accomplishment when it first earned national accreditation with the Land Trust Accreditation Commission in 2019. The land trust accreditation program recognizes land conservation organizations that meet national quality standards for permanently protecting important natural places and working lands. Just 12 of Virginia’s nearly 40 private land trusts have earned national accreditation – a designation that demonstrates a land trust adheres to the highest professional practices in twelve key areas of standards. Accreditation requires renewal every five years. Capital Region Land Conservancy is, therefore, pleased to announce it is applying for renewal of accreditation. A public comment period is now open.

Founded in 2005, CRLC has been instrumental in the permanent protection of over 13,000 acres of land, including 52 miles of stream and river frontage, throughout the City of Richmond and the counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Hanover, Henrico, Goochland, New Kent, and Powhatan. Of that, CRLC holds or co-holds conservation easements on more than 2,800 acres and, as of June 2023, has fee simple ownership of over 575 acres. In recent years, CRLC has made headlines for saving historic Malvern Hill Farm in eastern Henrico County, securing land at Dock Street in the City of Richmond to expand the James River Park System, and protecting land along the Chickahominy, Pamunkey, and Appomattox Rivers for wildlife habitat and local water quality.

“CRLC’s work has grown tremendously over the past 4 years as an accredited land trust,” noted CRLC Executive Director Parker Agelasto. “Accreditation renewal will mean CRLC can continue to serve as a reliable and effective conservation partner for landowners, localities, and our community.”

The Land Trust Accreditation Commission, an independent program of the Land Trust Alliance, conducts an extensive review of each applicant’s policies and programs. The process of pursuing renewal of accreditation challenges and strengthens a land trust as it scrutinizes and thoroughly documents every aspect of its operations while improving its policies and practices. Accreditation assures landowners, supporters, funders, and the land trust’s community that it is an organization abiding by the highest standards of excellence. It is a high mark of distinction.

The re-accreditation process includes formal public notice in which all stakeholders – including members of the public – are invited to submit comment on a land trust’s renewal of accreditation application. CRLC’s public comment period is now open. The Commission invites public input and accepts signed, written comments on pending applications. Comments must relate to how Capital Region Land Conservancy complies with national quality standards. These standards address the ethical and technical operation of a land trust. For the full list of standards and practices see http://www.landtrustaccreditation.org/help-and-resources/indicator-practices.

To learn more about the accreditation program and to submit a comment, visit www.landtrustaccreditation.org, or email your comment to: info@landtrustaccreditation.org.

Comments may also be mailed to the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, Attn: Public Comments, 36 Phila Street, Suite 2, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866.

Comments on the Capital Region Land Conservancy’s application will be most useful if received by March 22, 2024.

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About Capital Region Land Conservancy (CRLC): Incorporated in March 2005 as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, CRLC seeks to conserve and protect the natural and historic land and water resources of Virginia’s Capital Region for the benefit of current and future generations. Visit www.capitalregionland.org to learn more about CRLC’s land conservation programs.

For more information, contact Parker C. Agelasto, CRLC Executive Director at parker@capitalregionland.org or 202-302-0153.