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Laramie County Conservation District breaks ground on new headquarters

Members of the Laramie County Conservation District and Cheyenne LEADS break ground on LCCD's...
Members of the Laramie County Conservation District and Cheyenne LEADS break ground on LCCD's new headquarters Thursday afternoon.(Will Thomas)
Published: Apr. 8, 2021 at 6:24 PM CDT
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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (PRESS RELEASE) - The LCCD has finalized plans with assistance from local architectural firm, Plan One, and general contractor, Five-R, to start the construction of a new conservation headquarters.

LEADS approached the LCCD 10 years ago with hopes the LCCD would create a natural resource gem within a 100-acre parcel of undevelopable Cheyenne Business Parkway land, dubbed the Natural Area. The Natural Area not only contains upland shortgrass prairie, but over a mile of the Dry Creek drainage and riparian area. The LCCD was deeded 3.35 acres of commercial property adjacent to the Natural Area in exchange for its management and maintenance. The LCCD agreed this opportunity would benefit both parties and the community in multiple ways. The agreement opened an avenue to purposefully save, for over a decade, to erect a conservation headquarters. “The financial benefits of owning our own building provides more tax dollars back into Laramie County’s natural resource needs,” says Shaun Kirkwood, District Manager/Laramie County Conservation District. Kirkwood explained the Natural Area will become a grand-scale showcase of numerous Best Management Practices (BMPs) derived from all four LCCD programs. Therefore, education will be the overarching theme once the area’s improvements are completed over the next few years.

Cheyenne LEADS CEO, Betsey Hale, believes the partnership is a benefit to everyone involved, “This partnership between the organizations allows for the thoughtful management of an important natural area while helping provide a home to the Laramie County Conservation District.”

“The Laramie County Conservation District provides local leadership on natural resource issues and the management of lands within Laramie County. Conservation projects are funded by using local tax funds as a match for federal and state monies. The LCCD will continue to be accountable with public funds to ensure that

all district programs are carried out in a fiscally responsible manner” (LCCD mission statement).

The Laramie County Conservation District, and our goals for Laramie County:

· Conservation tax dollars at work

· Education of natural resources

· Wise use of natural resources

· Protecting Laramie County tax base

· Giving back to the community through natural resources

· Conservation partnership

About the Laramie County Conservation District

The Laramie County Conservation District provides Laramie County residents with the necessary information and technical assistance to support sustainable production from soil and water resources. The LCCD has a purpose to control flooding, improve air and water quality, increase wildlife habitat, protect, and promote the health, welfare and safety of Laramie County residents, while protecting the county’s tax base.

The LCCD is a local unit of government tasked with the leadership and management of the natural resources within its boundaries. Every 4 years the LCCD asks voter support to continue a ½ mill levy for natural resource conservation. The ½ mill levy funds 71% of operating expenses for the LCCD’s natural resource program areas. The mill levy also provides matching base funding so the LCCD can apply for federal, state and local grants. Grants brings additional natural resource funding that would otherwise never be seen to Laramie County.

About Cheyenne LEADS

Cheyenne LEADS is a private, not-for-profit corporation serving as the economic development entity for the City of Cheyenne and Laramie County, Wyoming. LEADS is funded by the Cheyenne business community with approximately 300 corporate and individual dues-paying members, and through contracts with the City of Cheyenne, Laramie County, and the Cheyenne-Laramie County Joint Powers Board.

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