Illinois Department of Natural Resources

INSTRUCTIONS FOR COMPLETING THE CSP APPLICATION

updated 06/13

We highly recommend you contact your County Assessor before completing your application to verify that enrolling into the Conservation Stewardship Program will not have an adverse effect on your property tax obligation.  The County Assessor’s office may also be able to provide you with the aerial map, plat map and property record card required with the submittal of your application.

The Conservation Stewardship Program was created by the Illinois General Assembly in 2007 by passage of Senate Bill 17. The bill was signed by Governor Blagojevich and became the Conservation Stewardship Law (Public Act 095-0633). Go here to see the complete text of the Law.

The Department of Natural Resources has developed rules for the administration of the Conservation Stewardship Program. Go here to see the complete text of the rules.

These instructions are provided to help you prepare a complete Conservation Management Plan as your application for enrollment in the Conservation Stewardship Program. As you prepare your plan, be sure to provide as much information as you can for each section of the plan.

If you need additional space for any portion of your plan, use the "Additional Information" page provided at the end of the plan form. We encourage you to use the conservation stewardship plan form on this web page, but you may also choose to prepare a separate, original document. If you do not use the plan form, your conservation stewardship plan must include all of the categories of information listed below.

Example - Management Plan

IDNR recommends landowners consult with a wildlife or forestry professional to establish their managment plan. There are a number of qualified consultants available throughout the state. A list of Consulting Foresters in Illinois is here.

Conservation Stewardship Online Application

INSTRUCTIONS FOR PREPARATION OF A CONSERVATION MANAGEMENT PLAN

1. Taxpayer Name: Enter the full name of the taxpayer as it appears on the annual property tax bill for the land covered by your conservation management plan.

2. Taxpayer Mailing Address: Enter the mailing address of the taxpayer as it appears on the annual property tax bill for the land covered by your conservation management plan.

3. Taxpayer Daytime Phone Number: Enter a phone number (including area code) at which the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) can reach you during normal business hours.

4. Taxpayer E-mail Address (optional): If you wish to allow DNR to contact you by e-mail, enter your e-mail address.

5. Property Index Number: Enter the property index number or parcel number for the unimproved land. These numbers can be found on your property tax bill.

Location of Unimproved Land: If you are not familiar with the land survey system used to identify land parcels in your county, contact your county assessor’s office for assistance in determining the description of your land. If the land covered by your conservation management plan is described under the French Land Grant system, enter your lot number below instead of a section number.

County - Enter the name of the county(ies) in which the unimproved land is located.

Township Name - Enter the name of the township in which the unimproved land is located.

Section - Enter the number of the section(s) in which the unimproved land is located. Section numbers range from 1 to 36 in each township or road district.

Township - Enter the number of the township in which the unimproved land is located, for example, T13N or T6S.

Range - Enter the number of the range in which the unimproved land is located, for example, R3W or R6E.

6. Map: Attach an aerial map, plat map and Property Tax Record Card that shows the location of the unimproved land covered by the conservation management plan. The aerial map must be on an 8-1/2 x 11" paper. Outline the boundary of the land covered by the conservation management plan. Aerial map, Plat Map and Property Tax Record Card can be acquired at your County Assessor's Office.

7. Acreage of Unimproved Land: Enter the size, in acres, of the parcel covered by the conservation management plan.

8. Current Condition of Unimproved Land: Check the choice(s) that describe the current status of the land. If you check "Other", provide a specific description.

9. Recent History of Land: Describe how the land has been used in recent years (up to 10 years if you are familiar with that time span) and any natural resource management practices that have been applied to the land during that time.

10. Plants and Animals Present on Land: List all plant and animal species that you or others have positively identified on the land. Be as specific as possible, but also include general groups of plants or animals that occur on the land.

11. Adjacent Land Use: Describe, in general terms, the use of land adjoining the unimproved land. For example, the adjacent land may be residential, agricultural, industrial, forest, grassland or a public roadway. A detailed description is not required.

12. Management Objectives: This is a statement of your broad goals for the unimproved land. Check the choice(s) that best match your intentions for the land. If you check "Other", provide a specific description of your objectives.

13. Conservation and Management Practices to be Applied to the Unimproved Land: Check those practices that you plan to use for management of your unimproved land. If you check "Other", provide a specific description of the practices you will apply.

14. Schedule for Implementation of Management Practices: A detailed schedule is required for management practices that will be implemented during the first two years following approval of your conservation management plan. List the practices to be used in each year, the month in which each practice will be implemented, the portion of the unimproved land on which each practice will be applied, and who will implement each practice. DNR is asking you to identify who will do the management because this information may be useful in determining if your management activities are eligible for financial assistance through state or federal conservation programs. For the third through fifth years following approval of your conservation management plan, simply list the management practices that you expect to implement during each year.

15. Non-native Invasive Species (NNIS) Known on Land: Plants that have been introduced to Illinois from other parts of the world can become a serious problem when they outcompete native species for space, light and nutrients. These exotic plants have become one of the greatest challenges in managing land for the benefit of native plants and animals. Some of the more widespread exotic plants are listed in this section. Check those plant species that have been found on the unimproved land. If you check "Other", give the names of the other exotic species on your land. Click here for a complete list of exotic species that should be named if they occur on your land. If exotic plants have been identified on your unimproved land, describe any management practices that will be used to reduce or eradicate the exotic species.

16. Uses of the Unimproved Land to be Allowed by Landowner: Check those uses that will be allowed on the unimproved land while it is being managed according to the conservation management plan. If you check "Other", provide a description of the additional uses that will be allowed. Enrollment in the Conservation Stewardship Program creates no obligation on the part of the landowner to allow public access to or use of the unimproved land. The landowner retains all rights to determine who enters the land and how the land is used by those who are allowed to enter.

17. Taxpayer Signature: The Conservation Management Plan must be signed and dated by the taxpayer who will receive the special property tax valuation upon plan approval. Acceptable formats for an electronic signature are shown below. By signing the application you are swearing that the statements are true and accurate to the best of your knowledge.

Signed: type taxpayer’s full name here or

Type taxpayer’s full name here /s/

Maps should be mailed to:

Conservation Stewardship Program
Office of Resource Conservation
Illinois Department of Natural Resources
One Natural Resources Way
Springfield, IL 62702-1271

If you have questions about the Conservation Stewardship Program or the application process, please contact the IL Department of Natural Resources at 217-785-8284.

2/23/2011 LL/ao