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FGC Sec 2720-2729 Habitat Conservation Program (WILDLIFE AND NATURAL AREAS CONSERVATION PROGRAM)
FISH AND GAME CODE
2720. Moneys available for the purposes of this chapter pursuant to
Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 5930) of Division 5.8 of the
Public Resources Code shall be deposited in the Wildlife and Natural
Areas Conservation Fund, which is hereby created. Money deposited in
the fund shall be available for appropriation by the Legislature to
the Wildlife Conservation Board, for expenditure pursuant to the
Wildlife Conservation Law of 1947, for the following programs:
(a) Forty-one million dollars ($41,000,000) for the preservation
of highly rare examples of the state's natural diversity through the
acquisition, enhancement, restoration, or protection, or a
combination thereof, of lands supporting California's unique,
fragile, threatened, or endangered plants, animals, and natural
(b) Six million dollars ($6,000,000) for the acquisition,
enhancement, restoration, or protection, or a combination thereof, of
critical habitat areas for fish, game mammals, and game birds,
including, but not limited to, the following types:
(1) Winter deer ranges.
(2) Wild trout or steelhead nursery and spawning areas.
(3) Significant routes of migration for wildlife.
(4) Breeding, nesting, and forage areas for sage grouse and other
upland game birds.
For purposes of this subdivision, "enhancement" includes the
construction or development of facilities for furnishing public
access to lands or waters open to the public for fishing, hunting, or
(c) Three million dollars ($3,000,000) for the acquisition,
enhancement, restoration, or protection, or any combination thereof,
of lands providing habitat for threatened, endangered, or fully
protected species, such as the bald eagle, San Joaquin kit fox,
desert tortoise, bighorn sheep, peregrine falcon, and California
2721. Funds available pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 2720
shall be expended to acquire, enhance, restore, or protect lands in
California on which any of the following naturally exists:
(a) A unique species or natural community, whose existence at a
single location in California is the only known occurrence in the
world of that particular species or natural community.
(b) A species that occurs in only 20 or fewer locations in the
world, at least one of which is in California.
(c) A natural community that occurs in only 50 or fewer locations
in the world, at least one of which is in California.
(d) An assemblage of three or more highly rare species or natural
communities, or any combination thereof, of which at least one of the
species or natural communities is found only in 20 or fewer
locations in the world.
2722. (a) Whenever the application of the criteria specified in
Section 2721 results in the identification of two or more parcels of
land that are essentially indistinguishable as to their quality,
preference shall be given to the parcel on which exists the species
that is more threatened or more endangered.
(b) Whenever the application of the criteria specified in Section
2721 results in the identification of two or more parcels of land
that are essentially indistinguishable as to their quality and the
degree of threat to, or endangerment of, the species existing on
them, preference shall be given to the parcel on which exists the
best example of the species. As used in this subdivision, "best
example" means the parcel of land and the wildlife inhabiting it
which, in balancing all the factors present, represents, as
determined by the board, the stronger combination of all of the
following: the better condition, higher quality, easier
defensibility, greater likelihood of long-term viability, and the
lesser costs to be incurred by the department in operating and
maintaining the parcel.
2723. (a) Of the total amount available pursuant to subdivision (a)
of Section 2720, not more than five million dollars ($5,000,000) may
be encumbered for any single acquisition project. In enacting this
limitation, the people of California recognize that there are a
number of important projects meeting the criteria of this chapter but
whose acquisition cost would most likely exceed this limitation.
Therefore, in these instances any acquisition cost in excess of this
limitation may be met by a donation by the owner, donations of funds
from private sources, or other funds from state or nonstate sources.
(b) The qualification for or allocation of a grant or grants to a
local agency under Section 2720 shall not preclude eligibility for an
additional allocation of grant funds to the same local agency
pursuant to Section 2720 of this code or Section 5907 of the Public
2724. (a) In choosing among two or more parcels of land to be
acquired, enhanced, restored, or protected with funds available
pursuant to subdivision (b) or (c) of Section 2720, preference shall
be given to acquiring, enhancing, restoring, or protecting the parcel
that will result in the least cost to the department for operating
and maintaining the land.
(b) Funds available pursuant to subdivisions (b) and (c) of
Section 2720 may be encumbered only for lands which constitute
habitat that is subject to destruction, drastic modification, or
significant curtailment of habitat values.
2725. No funds available pursuant to this chapter shall be
encumbered for any lands that, due to their degraded character, will
not sustain plants or wildlife or will not afford protection to a
natural community on a long-term basis.
2726. With respect to any lands which may be acquired, enhanced,
restored, or protected with funds under this chapter and which could
also be eligible for funds under Chapter 7 (commencing with Section
2600), funds under this chapter shall not be encumbered for those
lands until it is determined by the Wildlife Conservation Board that
funds are not likely to be available for those lands under that
2727. No funds available for appropriation under this chapter may
be encumbered for any purpose described in Section 1353 of the Fish
and Game Code.
2728. An annual amount, not to exceed three hundred fifty thousand
dollars ($350,000) may be appropriated from the fund in the 1988-89
through 1998-99 fiscal years, in an amount to be determined in each
annual appropriation, to the Wildlife Conservation Board for
expenditure for costs incurred by the board and the department in
administering this chapter, including, but not limited to,
preacquisition studies, planning, appraisals, surveys, and closing
costs. The Wildlife Conservation Board and the department may
augment, as needed, any amount thus appropriated with any funds
appropriated to it from any other source.
2729. (a) For the purpose of administering this chapter, the
Wildlife Conservation Board and the Department of Fish and Game shall
augment its existing staff, whenever possible, by contracting for
those services necessary for the administration of this chapter. Any
contract shall, however, be entered into only pursuant to Sections
19130 to 19132, inclusive, of the Government Code and shall be only
for the minimum period necessary for completion of the particular
project or projects for which the contract was entered into.
(b) Due to the limited duration of the program authorized by this
chapter, in the event some services cannot be provided by contract,
any personnel directly hired by the Wildlife Conservation Board for
the administration of this chapter shall be hired, to the extent
permitted by Article 2 (commencing with Section 19080) of Chapter 6
of Part 2 of Division 5 of Title 2 of the Government Code, as