After the deed for a conservation easement is filed at the courthouse, it’s permanent for all present and future owners of the land. The Trust has an obligation to make sure that the conservation easements we hold maintain the conservation values agreed to in the deed, and truly result in perpetual protection of the land and its important natural, historic, or scenic resources.
Trained staff members make annual visits to each property. During the site visit they touch base with landowners, document the current conditions of the protected areas, and help landowners make sure that their plans align with the conservation restrictions. This process is called stewardship.
The documentation includes photographs of buildings, views of the property, natural features, and more; Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) data; and notes on observations and comments from the landowner. The stewardship specialists also may make additional visits during the year to meet with landowners or respond to concerns that require on-site review.
The Trust welcomes landowners to join us during our property visits.
Stewardship specialists are always available to review conservation easement deeds with landowners, answer questions, and help make sure that activities on the land (such as tree work, construction, or other changes) are consistent with the terms in the conservation easement deed. They can help guide landowners to professionals for technical advice and find creative solutions where needed.
Conservation easements are a partnership between the landowner and the Trust, and we value this long-term relationship. Please call or email the stewardship specialists at any time to discuss your property.