How We Protect Lands
1. Target properties are identified and prioritized utilizing criteria:
- Property is at least partially within the Escondido Creek Watershed
- Has habitat with high biological value
- Is contiguous to other preserved/pristine open space
- Has willing sellers
2. Preservation strategies used by TECC include:
- Donation where landowner wants their land preserved for posterity and/or wants a charitable tax deduction. This can involve tecc holding the land in fee title or as the holder of a conservation easement.
- Occasionally TECC purchases property. Historically this has been limited to smaller strategic properties.
- Purchase by third parties where they need mitigation credit for a development project where habitat has been destroyed or impacted. The purchased land then is deeded in fee title or as a conservation easement to TECC to manage along with an annuity to cover long-term management costs.
- Larger properties/projects usually involve TECC negotiating an option to purchase the land under terms where the price is determined by an independent appraiser and with time sufficient for Tecc to do due diligence and then market the project. Once the option is secured, Tecc prepares a thorough report on the property that includes a bio-assessment, an appraisal, title and easement detail. TECC then markets the property to public and private entities interested in purchasing open space habitat. In these types of transactions TECC may hold the property for a very short time and then transfer the property to the funding agency. TECC may or may not be the entity responsible for the long-term management of the property after the sale.