We are a land trust--dedicated to the protection and preservation of the natural, historic, agricultural and scenic resources in our region. We believe that the path to fulfilling this mission is two-fold. First, through land preservation, and second through education. The founders of The Manada Conservancy had a number of reasons for establishing the Conservancy's mission; reasons shared by our evolving Board of Directors and by our members:
The continued existence of these resources holds the hope of a sustainable balance between the short term needs of the people who live here, the long-term needs of the generations to come, and the health of the ecosystem. We believe these are intertwined, and that attention must be paid to all. But these resources are being fragmented, destroyed and utilized in an unplanned fashion, with little or no vision of future consequences. Many organizations, both public and private, have made heartening inroads toward the solutions to these problems elsewhere. The Manada Conservancy focuses on our local area and its members are familiar with with specific needs and pressures on land in our local municipalities.
The Manada Conservancy has protected nearly 500 acres in our region since 1998. We are actively working on projects which will double this in the next year, should they all come to pass. Here are some of our successful projects.
Most commonly by Conservation Easement. Simply put, this is a restriction placed on a parcel of land, protecting its conservation value by limiting subdivision, restricting activities in sensitive areas, such as stream banks or steep slopes, or preserving it as farmland. The restrictions run with the deed in perpetuity. The land remains in the private landowner's hands, but some rights have been given up according to the terms of the easement. These restrictions reduce the value of the property by a measurable amount, which may be considered a charitable deduction by the IRS. The Manada Conservancy, in accepting the Conservation Easement, is then bound to make sure that the terms of the easement are never violated.
By outright land donation. The Manada Conservancy owns three parcels of land which were donated to us outright. We manage these lands in such a way that their environmental value is maintained and enhanced, and we often allow public access for passive recreation and educational purposes. Eagle Scouts have done several projects on our sites, and we are currently working with the Dauphin County Conservation District to plant a demonstration Riparian Buffer on our Swatara Greenway property. When a landowner donates a property outright, it is deeded to The Manada Conservancy, and the landowner may be able to take a tax deduction for the market value of the property.
Grants. Under certain conditions, grants are available to help with the purchase of land or the purchase of Conservation Easements.
For examples of our projects and how they were protected, please see Our Projects
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