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Adirondack Park Upper Hudson Rec Hub Eco-Tourism Support Grants

A Partnership Between TNC, NHT, and DEC

$250,000 RFA for municipal projects - The grant application deadline for municipalities is January 27, 2017.
$500,000 Microenterprise Grant Program for small businesses and not-for-profit organizations - the required Microenterprise Training Program will be held on January 26th from 8:30am to 4:00pm at the Town Hall in North Hudson, located at 3024 US Route 9, North Hudson NY 12855

DEC has partnered with the Natural Heritage Trust (NHT) and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) to deliver competitive grant funding to support new tourism activity linked to the high quality recreational opportunities now available in the heart of New York's Adirondack Park. A total of $750,000 in funding, provided by a grant from TNC, will be made available for recreation/tourism-based projects connected with former Finch, Pruyn & Company lands.

$500,000 Microenterprise Grant Program

Approximately $500,000 will be made available to for-profit small businesses and not-for-profit organizations via a separate competitive microenterprise grant program (MGP). The MGP will be delivered by the Essex County Industrial Development Agency and will fund business development and training as well as not-for-profit projects. The MGP was established to provide grants to eligible expanding or start up Microenterprise businesses and not-for-profit organizations that propose eco-tourism related initiatives, located in Essex County, the towns of Minerva, Newcomb and North Hudson and in Hamilton County, the towns of Indian Lake and Long Lake and proximate areas.

An additional eligibility requirement applies to any entity located outside the five Upper Hudson Rec Hub communities; a linkage demonstrating real impact on economic activity within these communities most closely tied to the former Finch / TNC lands.

For further detail on the program criteria, see the Microenterprise Program Eligibility Review and Scoring Sheet (PDF, 150 KB)

Qualified businesses and not-for-profits will be identified through an application process, and must participate in the Microenterprise Training Program (to be held on January 26th from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm at the Town Hall in North Hudson, located at 3024 US Route 9, North Hudson NY 12855). The Micro Training program will be conducted by the North Country Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at a cost of $60 per business (which may be eligible for reimbursement for grant recipients). A public information meeting for potential applicants was held on Thursday, January 19, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. at the Town Hall in Long Lake located at 1204 Main Street, Long Lake, New York 12847.

$250,000 Request for Applications (RFA) from Municipalities

The Natural Heritage Trust is now soliciting applications for Adirondack Park Upper Hudson Rec Hub Eco-Tourism Support Grants, funded by The Nature Conservancy. Approximately $250,000 in funding, provided to NHT by a grant from The Nature Conservancy, is anticipated to be made available under this RFA, with a maximum grant request of $125,000. Eligible applicants are municipalities in the Five Towns communities of Indian Lake, Long Lake, Minerva, Newcomb, and North Hudson.

Program Description

The Adirondack Park Upper Hudson Rec Hub Tourism Infrastructure Grants will support municipal projects that implement strategies and/or develop physical assets to bolster the recreation and tourism economy in the Five Towns that host the state's newest Forest Preserve lands. These lands-once owned by paper manufacturer Finch, Pruyn & Company-were protected by New York State in partnership with The Nature Conservancy. The communities of Newcomb, Minerva, North Hudson, Indian Lake and Long Lake complement the Park's natural and historic resources, and give the area its exceptional sense of place. These grants are intended to capitalize on an historic opportunity to strengthen the link between community prosperity and conservation lands.

This RFA provides detail on the activities eligible for funding and the grant selection criteria by which applications will be evaluated. In general, funds will support projects that support the grant objectives defined herein while remaining consistent with smart growth principles and environmental protection. NHT reserves the right to withhold funding from projects that do not receive a minimum score of 70. Projects that include physical assets must locate those assets either on municipal lands or on private lands, provided that a license for long term use and maintenance will be developed between the municipality and property owner.

Examples of projects that could potentially be supported by this program include:

  • lodging and related infrastructure
  • recreational infrastructure to support use such as mountain biking, horse trail riding, snowmobiling, kayaking, rafting, fishing and hiking
  • pedestrian-oriented and bicycle-friendly projects designed to link communities with surrounding Forest Preserve and Conservation Easement lands
  • visitor orientation including traditional signage and new technology
  • durable equipment to be maintained for public recreational use

Application and Instructions

Please download and fill in the application electronically. Print and sign one original, put a final electronic version on compact disc and mail the application package to the address below.

Full application and instructions (PDF, 646 KB)
Microsoft Word format of the Application form only

An original and one electronic copy (on compact disc) of each application must be sent to:

US Postal Service:

The Natural Heritage Trust
Adirondack Park Upper Hudson Recreation Hub Grants
Albany, NY 12238

FedEx or UPS:

The Natural Heritage Trust
Adirondack Park Upper Hudson Recreation Hub Grants
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12207

Applications must be postmarked by January 27, 2017.
Hand delivered applications must be received by 4:00 p.m. on January 27, 2017.

Please contact DEC (contact info in right hand column) if you have questions on the application process or eligibility requirements, or questions on the contents of this RFA.

Responses to Applicant Questions regarding RFA for Municipal Projects

Applicant's questions will be answered and posted here until January 13, 2017.

Q: Would a partnership with another landowner be acceptable with the Town as lead applicant?
A: Yes, municipalities are encouraged to partner with private landowners wherever necessary to accomplish a project that meets the program goals. A letter of support is required from all partnering landowners. This is covered in more detail within the program RFA.

Q: Is a project location eligible if it is not directly adjacent to former Finch/TNC lands?
A: Yes, the program is intended to more generally support the tourism economy around the former Finch/TNC lands. There is one scoring criteria that assesses the linkage to former Finch/TNC lands. This could be accomplished through kiosks and signage with maps and visitor orientation, rather than a direct physical linkage.