Bay News Cayucos

Conservancy Group Wins Accreditation

The Cayucos Land Conservancy is celebrating a milestone in its efforts to preserve open space surrounding the Town That Time Forgot.

Formed in 1999 to fight a proposed subdivision on the Estero Bluffs north of town, the CLC has now been given national recognition with accreditation from the Land Trust Alliance, the group announced.

“It is exciting to recognize Cayucos Land Conservancy with this distinction,” Tammara Van Ryn, executive director of the Land Trust Accreditation Commission said in a news release. “Accredited land trusts are united behind strong ethical standards ensuring the places people love will be conserved forever. Accreditation recognizes that Cayucos Land Conservancy demonstrated sound finances, ethical conduct, responsible governance, and lasting stewardship.”

The Conservancy joins some 398 accredited land trusts across the U.S., “that have proved their professional excellence and ability to maintain the public’s trust in their work.”

It wasn’t an easy honor to get. As part of the accreditation application, CLC had to provide extensive documentation and undergo comprehensive reviews, the group said. The Commission’s award, “signifies its confidence that CLC’s lands will be protected forever.”

“Accreditation demonstrates our commitment to permanent land conservation,” Glenn Oelker, president of CLC’s Board of Directors said. “We are a stronger organization for having gone through this rigorous accreditation process. We are more confident than ever that we will reach our goal of creating a greenbelt around Cayucos, making our town an even greater place to live for us and for our children.”

An “all-volunteer” group, CLC, “relies exclusively on its Board of Directors and generous supporters to help carry out and fund its work. Among its success stories are the aforementioned Estero Bluffs, which were not only saved form development, but were added to the local State Parks’ system. The adjacent San Geronimo Ranch is also part of that conservation effort.

CLC has also been acquiring small, parcels of undeveloped land that are part of two large paper subdivisions on the hillsides above Cayucos. Those unbuildable lots have been slowly being foreclosed on by the County Tax Assessor and preserved.

CLC is also involved in preserving the Chevron Estero Marine Terminal, which is on Hwy 1 between Morro Bay and Cayucos, to keep it as a buffer between the two communities. The Morro Bay Open Space Alliance is also working towards preserving that more than 700-acre property.

CLC will celebrate its accomplishment at its annual community reception, this year entitled “Looking Forward” from 5-7 p.m. Friday, April 13 at Skipper’s Restaurant in Cayucos. See: www.landtrustaccreditation.org for more information on the Land Trust Alliance. See: www.cayucoslandconservancy.org for more on the CLC.

In the photo a couple admires the view overlooking Cayucos. Photo by Rocki deLlamas/deLlamas Design & Graphics

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