The Logan County Land Trust (LCLT) recently met in the community room at the Solid Waste Building in Bellefontaine for their annual meeting.
In the business portion of the meeting, the LCLT heard from two members of the West Liberty Village Council, Jill McKelvey and Jayne Griffith.
They presented the LCLT Board with a potential new project for collaboration in the village.
The council is considering creating a green community space next to the bike path on the west side of the village. The purpose is to establish a destination for bikers, walkers and hikers to stop off the path and discover the village, with amenities near the path to enjoy rest, bike service and shelter.
The LCLT Board will further discuss the possibility of applying for community grants for creating green spaces with trees, prairie grasses, and therapeutic plantings using permaculture designs.
Additional ideas for the project include creating a shelter from re-claimed lumber or re-locating a small historical building in the county utilizing Landmark Preservation grants as well as including other community groups and partners.
Immediately following the conclusion of their business meeting, the LCLT convened their annual meeting.
About 20 guests and Board members were present for the main guest speaker, David Miren from the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA).
Mr. Miren is the Executive Director of the Hemp Program for Ohio. He shared details of the new approved Hemp Program and application process for new Ohio producers. He stated there is an abundance of interest and his office of four is handling about 100 calls a day from potential Ohio growers.
Mr. Miren also shared information regarding the Ohio Farmland Preservation process, specific areas in Logan County already preserved and Century farms located in the county. County Commissioner Joe Antram shared with the audience that his historical family farm had recently been awarded with the title of “Century Farm.”
LCLT President, Bob Stoll, reviewed the accomplishments of the Land Trust and gave updates on new and ongoing projects.
As of this spring, 2,916 acres of farmland have been preserved and an additional 680 acres that are in the application process. Those acres are expected to be approved within the next two years.
Currently, the Land Trust has assisted landowners in bringing $ 3,027,152.00 into the county’s economy with another $1,238,329.00 of additional monies anticipated after approval of the pending applications.
The LCLT continues to be involved with the Youth Environmental Club at Ben Logan School, as well as with other educational programs for youth and adults and protecting woodlands using conservation methods.
The LCLT is seeking additional funds to implement new projects such as acquiring new lands for preservation, expanding youth environmental clubs to other schools in the county, protecting county landmarks and presenting programs on farm succession.
Members of the board are currently collaborating with Champaign County and other agency representatives to create and present programs in both Logan and Champaign counties on utilizing cover crops with a $10,000 grant award from the National Wildlife Federation. Cover crops can be used not only as a land preservation method, but also to reduce erosion due to flooding.
This spring, the LCLT will launch a new fund-raising campaign to preserve and restore the log cabin at Camp Myeerah. The board hopes to raise at least $50,000. The log cabin is one of very few left in the county and the board is committed to assisting with it’s restoration to create a useful landmark to be enjoyed by our community for generations.
The LCLT is an all-volunteer board with a budget of approximately $7000.
The board accepts new members, donations and appreciates the continued support from the community to fulfill their mission.