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FYI from Grant.Gelhardt. Important point bolded. Anyone want to try for some new trails?
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Florida Communities Trust 2008 Florida Forever Funding Cycle

Florida Communities Trust will open its eighth Florida Forever application cycle on February 22, 2008. An expected $66 million will be available this funding cycle for grants to local governments and environmental non-profit organizations to acquire land for conservation, open space and outdoor recreation purposes. Cities, counties and non-profit environmental organizations may apply for grants through 5:00 p.m. (EDT) on May 7, 2008.

In conjunction with the start of the 2008 Florida Forever application cycle, FCT will hold a series of free workshops across the state to help communities navigate the application process. In addition, you may visit our Application Technical Assistance page to download the FCT-4 grant application and see additional information about the FCT application process. If you have any questions about the 2008 Florida Forever application cycle, please call (85O) 922-22O7.

2008 Application Workshops are free - No registration is required:

Pinellas Park: Tuesday, February 19, 2008 - 9:00 am - 1:00 pm (EST)

Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council
Suite 100, Conference Room
4000 Gateway Centre Boulevard
Directions: Call (727) 57O-5151

Hollywood: Wednesday, February 20, 2008 - 9:00 am - 1:00 pm (EST)
South Florida Regional Planning Council
Suite 140, Conference Room
3440 Hollywood Boulevard
Directions: Call (954) 985-4416

Sanford: Thursday, February 21, 2008 - 9:00 am - 1:00 pm (EST)
Seminole County Government Complex
County Commission Chamber, Room 1028
1101 East First Street
Directions: Call (4O7) 665-0311

Jacksonville: Tuesday, March 4, 2008 - 9:00 am - 1:00 pm (EST)
Northeast Florida Regional Planning Council
Board Room
6850 Belfort Oaks Place
Directions: Call (9O4) 279-0880

Tallahassee: Thursday, March 6, 2008 - 9:00 am - 1:00 pm (EST)
Department of Community Affairs
Sadowski Building
Kelley Training Center, Room 305
2555 Shumard Oak Boulevard
Directions: Call (85O) 922-2207
 

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Hey WolverineGator. Sounds like interesting news. What do you know about eligibility as well as who should be attending these workshops (who should we be prodding)? I'd love to see some of that money go to MTB trails.
 

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Prod, prod, prod...

Environmental non-profits such as Friends of the Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail (FrogHat) and Friends of San Felasco (a non-profit corporation) can apply. City governments can apply, such as Gainesville and Fierce Pierce. Groups such as these are always starved for funds, so a quick email or personal conversation to alert them of this opportunity would be great.

Maybe email or write something like this:

Please consider applying for Florida Communities Trust 2008 Florida Forever Funding to expand and improve XXX cycling trails. Funds could be used to build bridges over sensitive areas, berms, and erosion control features.... blah blah blah. Also, please buy the land Razorback sits on. Thanks.


Personally I'm extremely busy with two cycling-related volunteer initiatives and really can't do anything on this. I'll give more details on this board later as these initiatives develop. Plus, I'll probably come begging for volunteer help later on. ;) :eek:
 

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This is a great program. We are in the process of closing on 86 acres along I95/CR512 that will connect to the 22,000 acre Buffer Preserve funded through FCT.
 

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FellsmereMGR said:
This is a great program. We are in the process of closing on 86 acres along I95/CR512 that will connect to the 22,000 acre Buffer Preserve funded through FCT.
How do you find out about fulfilling the requirements for eligibility for these grants. I looked at the checklist and it requires matched funding as well as getting local government support (unless that is different for not-for Profit agencies).
 

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Your best bet is to work through your City. Cities of a certain size are exempted from the match requirement but you get more points if you provide it. Stakeholder support is essential as is meeting their goals and objectives for a given region.
 

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FellsmereMGR said:
Your best bet is to work through your City.
Thanks FellsmereMGR
This is what I'm wonder about. What would be steps to take in order to be recognized to get local support. Would I have to write or meet with local gov. officials? If so who would you recommend?
To be honest, until the recent closings of two major mountain biking parks, I've never given much thought to obtaining grants for this purpose. This is the first opportunity I've come across that could potentially help. However, I'm having trouble trying to get started. One of the club organizers had the foresight to register our club as a non-for profit organization. We are a small club with members throughout FL. For the moment we are far from meeting all the requirements to submit a grant and realistically, even with serious effort, it may still take years for us to have standing (to shore up public support and to obtain funds). However, a little push in the right direction would be a really big help and would also be greatly appreciated.
 

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It all depends on your locale. You should first try your Parks & Rec department and see what they say and get a sense of thier interest. You should also look to your elected officials, I can guarantee that you have at least one that cares about green space/open space and low impact sports like MB.

Tell me your jurisdiction and I will poke around a bit for you.

I'm the City Manager of a smaller community so I get directly involved in these issues and it is part of our larger emphasis on eco-tourism and open space preservation.


Cyclopod said:
Thanks FellsmereMGR
This is what I'm wonder about. What would be steps to take in order to be recognized to get local support. Would I have to write or meet with local gov. officials? If so who would you recommend?
To be honest, until the recent closings of two major mountain biking parks, I've never given much thought to obtaining grants for this purpose. This is the first opportunity I've come across that could potentially help. However, I'm having trouble trying to get started. One of the club organizers had the foresight to register our club as a non-for profit organization. We are a small club with members throughout FL. For the moment we are far from meeting all the requirements to submit a grant and realistically, even with serious effort, it may still take years for us to have standing (to shore up public support and to obtain funds). However, a little push in the right direction would be a really big help and would also be greatly appreciated.
 

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FellsmereMGR said:
It all depends on your locale. You should first try your Parks & Rec department and see what they say and get a sense of thier interest. You should also look to your elected officials, I can guarantee that you have at least one that cares about green space/open space and low impact sports like MB.

Tell me your jurisdiction and I will poke around a bit for you.

I'm the City Manager of a smaller community so I get directly involved in these issues and it is part of our larger emphasis on eco-tourism and open space preservation.
Thanks again, we appreciate any help we can get. I am in Gainesville, and while we haven't selected any particular property, we would probably look somewhere in the central florida region, in either Alachua or Marion county.
 

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Well you probably have many great opportunities and with the present real estate market now is the time to aquire open space. I would touch base with the respective entities where your group has a presence, call the Mayor and see how they receive you. You might be suprised to find that they already have a land aquisition fund.

One reason it is good to get the City and/or County to pursue the application is because there are up front costs. Here's a few things that we have had to spot on the front end; two appaisals($5,000 each), Phase I Env ($4,800), Phase II Env ($12,750), as well as other processing costs. We also have a grant writer putting the package together for a cut of the backend sales commission from the seller.

If you want to see a copy of our management plan to get a sense of the amount of effort involved I'd be happy to email it to you, just pm your email.

Google "gainesville open space" and you will get a number of links from their comp plan to a rec advisory committee. Good stuff out there.
 

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im down for building jumps drops in these crappy north west florida just to make it more exiting.
 
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