New York Environmental Protection Fund 2014


One of 4 ponds on the Ridgeview parcel atop the Shawangunk Ridge.

The addition of a beautiful 435-acre parcel (photo) along the Southern Gunks Greenway to Huckleberry State Forest depends upon funding for land preservation in New York's EPF.

New York State Budget 2014-15: Enhance the Environmental Protection Fund to Expand Economic and Environmental Benefits

The Friends of New York’s Environment is a partnership of more than 100 environmental, public health, agricultural, recreational and urban groups that supports the Environmental Protection Fund. The Trail Conference is a member of the coalition. For the upcoming year, we seek $200 million for the EPF.

Established in 1993, the EPF is the State's dedicated source of funding for critical environmental programs that protect what we love about New York - our clean drinking water, our magnificent parks, and our family farms. It is primary source of funding for open space protection in the state, a key focus for the Trail Conference. The Governor proposes to invest just $20 million in land protection in the next fiscal year.

Sadly, No money to protect land on the Shawangunk Ridge is in the Governor's land protection budget proposal.

This, despite the fact that the state has identified the Ridge as a priority area for open space protection, worked with the Trail Conference in the past to add land to ridgetop state forests, and is funding Trail Conference efforts to promote a Gunks Greenway on the Shawangunk Ridge.

Our goal is to increase EPF funding overall, to $200 million, and to increase the land acquisition budget in particularClick here to take immediate action by sending a letter to support the EPF. (You can edit the message with your personal comments.)

Issue Updates : 


February 12, 2014: EPF Lobby Day in Albany
Talking points: 
• The Environmental Protection Fund, the state's dedicated source of funding for programs that protect our clean waer and natural resources, is increased by a modest $4 million, to $157 million in the Governor's budget proposal for 2014-15.
• The source of funding for the EPF, the Real Estate Transfer Tax, is projected to grow to more than $1 billion by the end of the five-year fiscal plan, including steady projected growth each fiscal year. As this revenue source grows/recovers, so too should the EPF.
• The EPF should be increased to $200 million.
• A 2012 study by the Trust for Public Land showed that for every $1 invested in land and water conservation through the EPF, the state received $7 in economic return.
• With a 7-1 payoff for every dollar invested, a surplus in the state budget, and significant needs in communities


Additional Resources:

The Economic Benefits of New York's Environmental Protection Fund, a report compiled by the Trust for Public Land, January 2012. Click to download a copy of the TPL report.

Economic Benefits of Open Space Preservation: A report from the New York State Comptroller, March 2010  Click here to download a copy of the comptroller's report.