SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) will accept applications for grants through the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund program (LWCF) from June 1 through July 31, 2020. The LWCF provides matching funds to units of local government for acquisition of land for public parks and open space.

The LWCF grant program is financed nationally by revenue from offshore oil and gas leases and is administered in Illinois by the IDNR. Funding assistance up to 50 percent of approved project costs can be obtained. Grant awards up to $750,000 are available for acquisition projects.

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Only those local government agencies having statutory authority to acquire land for public park purposes are eligible to apply for and receive assistance under the LWCF grant program. Lands acquired using LWCF funds are required to be operated and maintained in perpetuity for public outdoor recreation.

Questions regarding the LWCF program should be directed to the Office of Grant Management and Assistance (OGMA) by calling 217-782-7481 or by emailing OGMA at DNR.Grants@illinois.gov.

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