We are enormously grateful to be recipients of a $150,000 Parks & Trails Partnership Grant for the construction of ADA pathways in and around the historic Jay Estate Gardens designed by Nelson Byrd Woltz. This transformative funding will allow a greater number of visitors and partners to enjoy the award-winning gardens and social justice programs. JHC President Suzanne Clary said, “The public can look forward to greater connectivity of our garden rooms both inside and outside the historic stone walled perimeters. Our gardens were designed for every person of every age, ability and mobility.”
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced $1.8 million in grants to support 28 not-for-profit organizations involved with stewardship of state parks, trails, historic sites and public lands, the highest amount awarded in the Park and Trail Partnership Grants program history. The grants support partner group efforts to raise private funds for capital projects, engage in maintenance and beautification projects, provide educational programming, and host special events that promote public use of the parks.
“We are proud to support the work of the incredible grassroots partner organizations that elevates the stewardship and programming of our state parks, historic sites, trails and public lands,” Governor Hochul said. “With the largest investment in the Park and Trail Partnership Grants program history, New York State is sending a message that we are deeply committed to protecting and funding our public lands as we continue to embark on nation-leading climate resiliency initiatives.”
The Park and Trail Partnership Grants program is funded through the state Environmental Protection Fund. Grants are administered in partnership with the not-for-profit advocacy group Parks & Trails New York. This eighth round of awards will be matched by over $625,000 in private funds. Recipients must raise outside funding of at least 10 percent of the grant amount received.
New York State Parks Commissioner Erik Kulleseid said, “State Parks is so fortunate to have incredible partners in Governor Hochul, Parks & Trails New York, and the countless friends groups and volunteers who help ensure the success of our offerings to the public. I look forward to seeing how this historic investment of $1.8 million will help more New Yorkers access and connect with our phenomenal natural and historic resources.”
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “The natural beauty and character of New York’s lands draws millions of visitors each year and the support of our stewardship partners is critical to the ongoing needs to maintain and preserve these areas, as well as facilities like environmental education centers. Today’s significant grant funding acknowledges the critical roles these partners play at DEC and other public resources and we are grateful for Governor Hochul’s continued investments to help provide essential services to make the outdoors accessible for visitors to enjoy now and into the future.”
Parks & Trails New York Executive Director Paul Steely White said, “These grants are like rich organic fertilizer for growing the grassroots movement to improve New York’s parks, trails, historic sites, and public lands. Accessible kayak launches, bridge repairs, strategic planning and youth education are just a few examples of the newly funded projects that will bring more nature and more joy to more New Yorkers.”