Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Boxborough Conservation Trust (BCTrust)?
The BCTrust is a private, non-profit 501(3)(c) organization founded in 1997 to protect Boxborough’s open land for conservation, agriculture, passive recreation, and general public benefit.
What does the BCTrust do?
The principal function of the BCTrust is to preserve open space and protect undeveloped land. The Trust works with landowners and assists the Town to identify options for land protection through either acquisition of the property or of the development rights (conservation restriction) for the property. There are a variety of methods for protecting land, and keeping land owners informed is the primary focus of the Trust’s work. The BCTrust may also contribute funds to the Town for the acquisition of land for conservation or preservation. The BCTrust sponsors lectures on naturalist topics, hikes, and activities at the Blanchard Memorial Elementary school and provides stewardship for BCTrust and Town-owned conservation land.
If I get the BCTrust’s publication, Common Ground, does that mean I’m a member?
No. Every mailing address in Boxborough gets a free copy of the BCTrust Newsletter, Common Ground. It is part of our mission to share information about conserving and preserving land and the Town’s natural resources.
How can I help by becoming a member?
As a BCTrust member, you are actively supporting the Trust’s work through your membership donation. For example, the BCTrust:
- Contributed $50,000 towards the Patch Hill land acquisition
- Funded the construction of boardwalks on Patch Hill
- Contributed $23,000 to the Town to acquire the Ashmore land abutting Indian Meadow conservation land
- Purchased Shurtleff Woods abutting the Patch Hill conservation land
How can I get more involved?
The BCTrust is always looking for volunteers. If you would like to get involved, you may reach any of the BCTrust Board of Directors, or you may contact us by mail. Let us know if you see trails that need stewardship or have any concerns about activities on our properties.
What is the difference between the Boxborough Conservation Commission and the BCTrust?
The Boxborough Conservation Commission (Cons Com) is a state mandated board appointed by the Board of Selectmen. The Cons Com has legal obligations to assure compliance with the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act and the Boxborough Wetlands Bylaw. The Cons Com is also responsible for all of the town-owned conservation land. The BCTrust is a private, non-profit land trust, dedicated to preserving undeveloped land in Boxborough. The BCTrust and the Cons Com are not legally affiliated in any way; however, the BCTrust often works in collaboration with the Cons Com when the Commission reviews offers of land sale or land gifts to the Town for conservation purposes.
Are contributions to the BCTrust Tax Deductible?
Yes, to the extent allowed by law. The Boxborough Conservation Trust is is an all-volunteer, nonprofit 501(c)(3) land trust. A copy of the Massachusetts Department of Revenue Form ST-2 Certificate of Exemption is available here.
Is hunting allowed on BCTrust Properties? No. There is no hunting allowed on any of our properties, per the Conservation Restrictions and deeds that are in place. Some properties may abut other lands on which hunting is allowed, however, so it’s a good idea to wear blaze orange (hats and/or vests or jackets) during hunting season. See Mass Wildlife’s information page on all hunting seasons in the state here. If you have any questions about the legality of practices on or near BCTrust properties, please call the Massachusetts Environmental Police at 800-632-8075.