The conservation easement is a legally binding document that can be amended under certain circumstances through a process outlined in the Guidelines for Amendments (updated 11/5/14). The guidelines contemplate scenarios under which a landowner might pursue an amendment to a conservation easement. Proposed amendments to a Deed of Conservation Easement may include:
- Updates in language standards
- Error corrections
- Changes to Reserved Rights
- Merging several easements into one
Amendments, depending on their complexity, may require approval of both the Easement Program Committee, the full Council, and in some instances, the New York State Attorney General’s office. Additionally, some amendment requests may require the opinion of a New York State Certified Appraiser to determine if the proposed amendment would result in a change to value of the original value of the conservation easement. As a Not For Profit Agency, the Watershed Agricultural Council is prohibited from conferring private benefit to an easement grantor under Federal Law.