Record Keeping Initiative




Keeping and Chucking

2019 Massachusetts Record Keeping Initiative


The Massachusetts Land Trust Coalition (MassLand), in partnership with the Land Trust Alliance (Alliance), is seeking applications from small and all-volunteer land trusts interested in participating in the Massachusetts Record Keeping Initiative. This project aims to address the backlog of land trusts’ records management needs at a substantially reduced cost and assist land trusts in adopting sound records management policies and procedures.

Goals of the Massachusetts Record keeping Initiative

  • Property records and select organizational records are organized and digitized.
  • Critical materials missing from property files are identified.
  • Land trusts have a records policy template tailored and ready for Board adoption.
  • Land trusts gain an understanding of how to identify, organize and store their critical records.

February 14:         Informational Call to Learn More about the Program
March 22:              Applications Due
April 5:                     Announcement of Land Trusts Selected to Participate (up to 5 chosen)
Late April:              Land Trusts Begin Working with Expert Consultant
December 15:       First Round of Record keeping Completed

Land Trust Criteria and Expectations

  • Land Trust is a current member of MassLand and the Alliance
  • Land Trust has three or fewer staff
  • Land Trust is not accredited nor participating in the Terrafirma insurance program
  • Land Trust commits to at least 2 in-person meetings with consultant
  • Records are organized into general categories of “property,” “organizational” and “other” before contractor begins work
  • Land Trust provides meeting or office space for consultant to work
  • Land Trust agrees to pay $30 per property file the consultant reviews. (Estimated actual cost per property file is $150)
  • Land Trust agrees to complete follow-up survey from MassLand one year after project completion to indicate how record keeping work is being sustained

Land Trust Selection Process 
Questions about this project can be referred to

Land trusts interested in participating in this project should submit by email a letter of interest by March 22, 2019 to  Letters will be reviewed by MassLand and Alliance staff with a focus on land trust readiness and ability to participate in this process if chosen. 

Letters of interest should be submitted as Microsoft Word Documents and include (no more than 2-pages total):

  • Land trust name, location and communities where land trust operates.
  • General background about your land trust (e.g. years in existence, number of full and part-time staff, current activities).
  • Indicate the number of fee properties and the number of conservation restrictions your land trust holds.Please count each separate deed or conservation restriction as a separate holding.
  • Does your land trust have a board adopted records policy? Please share if you do.
  • Describe how your land trust will sustain records management beyond the life of this project.
  • Describe how your land trust will meet the time commitment for this project.
  • Land trusts that submit a letter of interest will be contacted by April 5 with details about whether they have been selected and next steps.
  • Confirm a commitment to contribute $30 per property file reviewed.
  • Land trust point of contact for all project communications


The Massachusetts Record Keeping Initiative is made possible by the generous support of the Fields Pond Foundation, the Fieldstone Foundation, the Stifler Family Foundation, and others