The LWCF Civil War battlefield preservation program comprises matching grants to state and local governments that Congress must appropriate annually. The grants are awarded through a competitive process, with a match of at least 50 percent. The LWCF authorizes money for both fee simple purchases and easement acquisition, but non-profits cannot receive funding directly. The program is administered by the American Battlefield Protection Program (ABPP), an arm of the National Park Service in the Interior Department. $900 million a year flow into the Land and Water Conservation Fund from Federal receipts from leasing the Outer Continental Shelf for oil and gas development. The Civil War Trust helped to secure the $4 million recently appropriated by Congress for Fiscal Year 2009.
The ALE program is managed by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture. NRCS may contribute up to 50 percent of the fair market value of the agricultural land easement. Where NRCS determines that grasslands of special environmental significance will be protected, NRCS may contribute up to 75 percent of the fair market value of the agricultural land easement. This Federal program was authorized to provide Federal financial assistance in the form of matching grants to keep working farms in existence.