Ask the Conservation Director: MHLC is an Accredited Land Trust- what does that mean?

 

This month’s “Ask the Conservation Director” post explores MHLC’s accreditation with the Land Trust Alliance. 

The land trust accreditation program recognizes land conservation organizations that meet national quality standards for protecting important natural places and working lands forever.  The Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy is pleased to announce it is applying for renewal of accreditation, and there is an opportunity for you to provide feedback on our operations as an accredited land trust!

Stakeholder Notification/Public Notice: A public comment period is now open.

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 Commission invites public input and accepts signed, written comments on pending applications. Comments must relate to how Mohawk Hudson 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, please visit the Land Trust Accreditation Commission’s website

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 faxed or mailed to the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, Attn: Public Comments: (fax) 518-587-3183; (mail) 36 Phila Street, Suite 2, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866.

 

Q: MHLC is an Accredited Land Trust…. what does that mean?

A: From the Land Trust Alliance (LTA):

Land trust accreditation is a mark of distinction, showing that a land trust meets high standards for land conservation… Accreditation demonstrates that a land trust has successfully implemented Land Trust Standards and Practices.”

MHLC received our accreditation with the Land Trust Accreditation Commission in 2013.

The Land Trust Alliance’s Standards and Practices guide the operation of hundreds land trusts across the country. Accreditation was a watershed moment in our organization’s history: we demonstrated compliance with ethical and technical standards for responsible operation, thus gaining the approval of a nation-wide organization. This also demonstrates to our landowners, donors, supporters, and partners that MHLC is committed to using best practices for land transactions and fundraising efforts.

In 2018, MHLC is working towards reaccreditation. Accreditation is reevaluated every five years by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission to ensure a land trust adheres to the LTA’s Standards and Practices. In preparation, our staff are providing organizational policies, files from land transactions, and other documentation to the Land Trust Accreditation Commission for review. This thorough process of documentation and auditing takes nearly six months to complete.

Why is this important? By receiving accreditation, and being reaccredited every five years, MHLC is demonstrating compliance to the Land Trust Alliance’s Standards and Practices, ensuring responsible conservation practices. In short, MHLC’s accreditation helps us show that your local land trust is truly trustworthy; donations of land, money, and time are used responsibly and effectively towards the permanent conservation of land.

As we work towards completing this process, you can learn more about our accreditation and Land Trust Alliance membership for collective impact on our updated About page.

You can also read our updated Where We Work page, which outlines our priority areas and land acquisition criteria, a required LTA Standard and Practice.

Learn more about accreditation, the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, and the benefits of being accredited on the Land Trust Accreditation Commission’s website.

Have a question for MHLC’s Conservation Director? Email your questions to MHLC Conservation Director, Sarah.

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