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News Release

Colorado NRCS Announces $3.9 Million in Funding for 2018 Agricultural Conservation Easement Program

Petra Popiel

2018 ACEP Funding Opportunity

December 14, 2017 DENVER, CO – Colorado Natural Resources Conservation Service State Conservationist Clint Evans announced the availability of $3.9 million in funding for landowners to participate in the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program – Agricultural Land Easement (ACEP-ALE) in Colorado. Application packages are due on Wednesday, January 31st, 2018 by 4:00 p.m. for funding consideration.

The purpose of the ACEP-ALE program is to protect the agricultural viability, grazing uses and related conservation values by limiting nonagricultural uses of the land.

Applicants (eligible entities) must be a federally recognized Indian Tribe, state or local units of government, or a non-governmental organization. Applicants must have an established farmland protection program that purchases agricultural conservation easements for the purpose of protecting agriculture use and related conservation values by limiting conversion to nonagricultural uses of the land.

USDA provides up to 50 percent of the appraised fair market value of the conservation easement in this voluntary program. The landowner retains ownership and continues to use the land for agricultural purposes.
To be eligible to receive ALE funding, applicants must demonstrate a commitment to long-term conservation of agricultural lands; a capability to acquire, manage, and enforce easements; a sufficient number of staff dedicated to monitoring and easement stewardship; and the availability of funds.

Completed application packets should be emailed to David Colburn at  or mailed to him at the following address: David Colburn, Easements Coordinator, USDA-NRCS, Denver Federal Center, Building 56, Room 2604, Denver, CO 80225. The deadline to submit the application packet is Wednesday, January 31st, 2018 by 4:00 p.m.  Postmarked applications sent via mail WILL NOT be accepted.
For more information about ACEP-ALE, please contact Colburn at 720-544-2820.  You can also visit your local NRCS Service Center or visit the Colorado NRCS website at