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WQIP Land Acquisition Projects for Source Water Protection Toolkit

The Water Quality Improvement Project (WQIP) Program grant application period is now available through the Consolidated Funding Application (leaves DEC website). To learn more about Land Acquisition Projects for Source Water Protection funding made available through this grant, view the WQIP Land Acquisition Fact Sheet (PDF).

Recipients of WQIP grant funding to acquire land for source water protection must complete the necessary documentation to receive approval for land purchases and/or conservation easements identified in their work plan. To aid with the development of these documents, DEC has developed standards and guidelines for awardees to use.

Land Acquisition Project Documents

The documents listed below are a few examples of what may need to be submitted for land purchase and/or conservation easement approval.

  • Municipal Notification
  • Public Access
  • Non-Restricted Appraisals
  • Environmental Assessments
  • Baseline Documentation
  • Surveys
  • Conservation Easement Language
  • Title Report and Insurance
  • Purchase Price and Deed

Document Resources

Grant recipients will find two sets of guidelines, required and suggested, to use when developing land acquisition project documents. Required includes standards that must be complied with in order to receive approval for those specific documents. Suggested includes information that could be useful, but the recipient does not have to follow. DEC is in the process of developing additional guidelines that will be added to the appropriate list once they are finalized.


  • Appraisal Standards (PDF) - DEC standards for appraisals.
  • Code of Practice for Land Surveys adopted by the New York State Association of Land Surveyors (leaves DEC website) - Surveys for WQIP Land Acquisition Projects must be in accordance with the Code of Practice for Land Surveys adopted by the New York State Association of Land Surveyors and:
    1. The survey(s) should be certified to:
      1. Name of Purchaser
      2. The People of the State of New York (with reference to funding source)
      3. Title Insurance Company (with reference to the Title Policy #)
    2. Certification should read something similar to the following:
      1. "Certifications on this survey map signify that the map was prepared in accordance with the current existing Code of Practice for Land Surveys adopted by the New York State Association of Professional Land Surveys, Inc. The certification is limited to persons or entities for whom the survey map is prepared, to the governmental agency and to the title company listed on this survey map. The certifications hereon are not transferable."
    3. In the certification block the surveyor should state: Surveyed and Certified by: Name of Firm and Land Surveyor with the surveyors License Number clearly shown.
  • Deed Requirements (PDF) - Notice of Grant and additional language to be included in the deed.
  • Deed Requirements for Closed Acquisitions (PDF) - Notice of Grant document required for already-closed acquisitions not containing the required deed clause. The Notice must be recorded against the subject property and a certified copy provided to the Department. Items in bold are to be filled in by the Awardee.
  • Conservation Easement Clauses and Notice of Grant (PDF) - Clauses required to be included in not-yet-closed conservation easements and applicable Notice of Grant document.
  • Environmental Assessment Checklist (PDF) - Checklist of items that should be included in environmental assessment reports.
  • Map Required Elements (PDF) - Appendix D from the WQIP Program Overview that lists all required elements a map must include once a parcel has been identified for acquisition. This is only a requirement for awardees who did not identify the proposed parcel to be acquired when applying to the program.


Additional Resources

Below are additional resources to aid awardees with contract development and other contract items.

  • Sample Land Acquisition Work Plan (PDF) - A sample document awardees can follow to develop a work plan specific to their project and/or program.
  • Quarterly Report (MS Word) - Use this template to prepare quarterly reports for Land Acquisition Projects for Source Water Protection. The Program Progress Details section of the Quarterly Report must include:
    • All objectives and tasks listed in the associated work plan and in matching order.
    • The same performance measures listed in the associated work plan.
    • A quarterly activity description for each task. If a task has yet to be worked on, the quarterly activity description can state "No activity this quarter."
    • All objectives and tasks, even after they are 100% complete.
  • Attachment E - Acknowledgment of Funding Source (PDF) - Requirements for communication with the public and signage.
    • If you have any questions regarding signage requirements or Attachment E of the contract, contact us at before moving forward.

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