How to Apply

How to Apply

How to Apply (UPDATED DECEMBER 19, 2023)






Form 5 deadline extended to October 10, 2023 due to DLNR webspace malfunctions on October 9.

***INCLUDES Forms 5, 5a, 5b, 5c, maps, and photos***


***October 9 10, 2023 deadline to submit Form 5 via email to [email protected]***

The online application portal will open soon.

Please contact the program office for assistance at 808-586-0921  || 

[email protected]


Responses to general inquiries:

The state legacy land conservation program provides grants to State agencies, counties, and nonprofit land conservation organizations for acquiring interests in land that will be managed to provide conservation benefits.  A State agency, a county, or a nonprofit land conservation organization is eligible to apply for funding to purchase fee title for private land that provides conservation benefits, or to acquire a conservation easement over that land.  We accept applications from State agencies, counties, and nonprofit land conservation organizations for acquisition of fee title or conservation easement to conserve land for public benefit.

Please view our website at and call the program office with any specific questions, for more information, and for further guidance throughout the application process! 808-586-0921  ||  [email protected]

The first submittal in the application process is due October 9 10 (Form V agency consultation).  Final application due December 1.

Our volunteers that serve on the Legacy Land Conservation Commission review and rank the applications, and issue a recommendation to the State Board of Land and Natural Resources, which then approves specific grants for specific amounts of funding.


Q1Is there some specific requirement that defines a non-profit as a “land conservation” non-profit?  Or is any non-profit eligible if it will be acquiring the land for land conservation purposes?

A1:  The grant application calls for a nonprofit mission statement and IRS documentation, and an organization’s fulfillment of the grant eligibility requirements may be considered by the Legacy Land Conservation Commission in its application review and recommendation process.  Section 13-140-2, Hawaii Administrative Rules provides a definition:

“Nonprofit land conservation organization” means an organization that protects “resource value” as defined herein or “land having value as a resource to the State” as defined under section 173A-2, HRS, as part of its activities or mission and has been determined and designated to be a nonprofit organization by the Internal Revenue Service.

“Resource value” means watershed, coastal area, beach, ocean access, habitat, cultural site, historic site, recreational, public hunting, park, natural area, agricultural production, open space, and scenic characteristics or benefits.

Q2curious how other organizations go about securing the land is it typically land that they hold long-term leases with under a private landowner, and the grant fund “buys out” the private landowner?  Or are they acquiring lands that are on the real estate market?  What about acquiring ADC lands?  Is that ever done on under this program?

A2:  Landowner buyout by a lessee isn’t a typical scenario but it’s possible, as long as the buyer is an eligible applicant.  Acquiring land listed on the open market is a common scenario, however the applicant or a partnering land trust may have established seller connections/commitments to complete a conservation transaction rather than an open market transaction.  In some cases an insider deal or a fat cash offer has derailed the planned conservation transaction.

ADC (Agribusiness Development Corporation) has used the program to acquire interests in land (a conservation easement over property owned by Hawaii Agricultural Research Center).  If ADC is authorized to sell its land, then perhaps ADC land could be acquired by an eligible buyer with a grant from the Land Conservation Fund, although that would be a case of first impression that would probably call for State legal review.

Q3:  . . . noticed there are options on Form 5 to include more than one parcel.  Do these properties need to be contiguous?  Or can I apply to acquire one parcel in location X and another one in location Y with the same intent to conserve/reforest/restore, etc.?

A3:  The properties don’t need to be contiguous.  If a single seller owns all the properties, that would be less complex and easier to process, administratively and contractually, than multiple properties under different ownership.  Applicant decides on application strategy, we don’t advise on that, a single application or multiple applications is up to you.  The Legacy Land Conservation Commission reviews and ranks each application separately, although relationships between different applications may influence the outcome of that process.

Q4:  . . . wondering about the funding for land stewardship – Did funds ever get allocated for organizations to apply for that?

A4:   . . . we plan to open a competition for FY2024 land stewardship funds early in the 2024 calendar year.


DIRECT NOTIFICATION emailed to subscribers on 20240926:

Please visit the State of Hawaii Legacy Land Conservation Program website at:

to begin the application process for our current cycle of land acquisition grant awards, and share this opportunity with your networks.

Approximately $6.8 million is available in our Fiscal Year 2024 budget for these awards.  More information will be posted during this award cycle.

For now, the most important action for applicants is to complete Forms 5, 5a, 5b, and 5c, and email them back to this email address within the next two weeks (by October 9 10) for optimal reply time from the consulting agencies.  Please contact the program office for assistance ([email protected], 808-586-0921).

E kala mai, we’re updating our mailing lists so please excuse any glitches.  Mahalo from Legacy Land Conservation Program!


CURRENT TIMELINE for the Fiscal Year 2024 (“FY2024”) grant funding cycle:

October 9 10, 2023 . . .   Submit completed Form 5, with Maps and Photos attached, via email to [email protected]

November 20, 2023 . . . Receive Form 5 response from consulting agencies

December 1, 2023 . . Submit final/complete application via online application portal

December 7, 2023 . . . . Legacy Land Conservation Commission (“LLCC”) Organizational Meeting to establish Permitted Interaction Groups for inspecting the grant applications, including Field Visits

December 8, 2023 – February 12, 2024 . . .  Field Visits by LLCC, with applicants and landwowners

February 13, 2024 . . .  Due date for Supplemental Application Materials

February 14-16, 2024 . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  LLCC public meetings (specific place/dates/times to be determined) for:

(1) Reporting by FY2024 LLCC Permitted Interaction Groups, and

(2) Review, Ranking, and Recommendations for FY2024 grant applications


February-March 2024 . . .  Legislative consultation about FY2024 grant applications

April 2024 . . . . . . . . . . . . . Board of Land and Natural Resources approval for FY2024 grant applications

May 2024 . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Governor’s approval for FY2024 grant applications

June 2024  . . . . . . . . . . . .  Encumber FY2024 funds for approved grant applications

After a completed application is reviewed by the Legacy Land Conservation Commission, and approved by the Board of Land & Natural Resources and the Governor,

a successful applicant can expect that grant funds will be available for expenditure not earlier than September 2024.

For assistance, please contact the Program office at (808) 586-0921.