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How the Comprehensive Conservation Plan for Chatham County was paid for

By Allison Weakley
Posted Thursday, September 15, 2011

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Pittsboro, NC - I'm writing in response to Mr. Glendinning's recent post (excerpt pasted below), which incorrectly stated that the Comprehensive Conservation Plan for Chatham County was paid for by "government (taxpayer) monies." The majority of the funding was not, in fact, from government (taxpayer) monies; and no monies were received from the NC Wildlife Resources Commission.

The plan was actually funded by the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation (a private foundation), the Wildlife Conservation Society (a global conservation organization with funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation), and the NC Forest Service Urban & Community Forestry Program (with funding through the USDA Forest Service). All three grants were very competitive, and were awarded because the grantors were impressed by the Plan proposal, including the goals and innovative approach. Only one of the three grants awarded was supported through federal taxpayer dollars (that required match from non-federal dollars), and that grant was awarded to address and promote the "economic importance" of forestry (working land) in Chatham.

Also, while the plan is very much a synthesis of existing information from various sources (that was part of the intent, to make it easy to reference so many sources of information), new data were created and various analyses conducted to show spatially in maps and also to describe in text Chatham's most important public resources - resources important for their ecosystem and economic value.

To view the plan and maps, please visit And feel free to contact me directly with questions about the Plan.

Here is an excerpt from Mr. Glendenning's post on the September 3 Chatham Chatlist:

"Ms. Weakley's report was paid for by government (taxpayer) monies. The grant, albeit administered by Triangle Land Conservancy, was partially from the NC Wildlife Commission. That is taxpayer money. The research which she provided in the report was done by the US Army Corps of Engineers, DENR departments, the NC Wildlife Commission, federal and state parks commissions, NC State University, government mapping records, etc., etc., etc. All the research was funded by taxpayer monies and cost many times more for the original research than the report grant. Ms. Weakley's report is based on a dearth of government research, little of it original."

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How the Comprehensive Conservation Plan for Chatham County was paid for

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