MORRIS TOWNSHIP, NJ - ValleVue Farm Preserve Acquisition will add 7.94 acres under a funding plan recommended Wednesday by a county panel.

The county Open Space Trust Fund Committee included the project in a list of six open space projects throughout the county it recommended for funding by the county freeholders.

The recommended award for phase 2 of this acquisition will be $684,900, according to the county.

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"The property will be used for passive recreation with connector trails and scenic viewpoints. The trails will connect to the existing trail network constructed under phase
one, which leads to other Morris Township-owned properties, including a thriving community garden, and to Lewis Morris County Park further to the west. The acquisition would protect the integrity of the historic and environmentally sensitive Washington Valley region".

The committee recommended the award of county preservation grants totaling $1.96 million for the six 2019 open space projects, totaling 164 acres, in six towns. In addition to recommending money for the Morris Township project, the panel said the freeholders should also fund projects in Chester, Denville, Jefferson, Roxbury and Mount Olive. 

The freeholders will vote on the grants later this month. They usually accept the committee's funding recommendations.

The money for the projects comes from the county preservation trust fund, generated by a special county tax. That money also is used for farmland and historic preservation, county parkland acquisition, trail construction, and the purchase of residential properties prone to flooding.  

Jay Thomson, who chairs the 15-member Trust Fund Committee, presented the recommendations to the freeholder board during its work session in Morristown. “We would like to thank the Freeholders and the voters of Morris County for their continued support,’’ said Thomson. “All of the projects have enabled residents of our county to enjoy a higher quality of life by having many opportunities to enjoy open spaces close to where they live."

The Open Space grant program has helped preserve 12,542 acres in 36 of the county’s 39 towns since the awarding of grants started in 1994. Morris County voters approved the program in November 1992.


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