H-PISMO BEACH

Feb 26, 2014 6:17 PM by Jeanette Trompeter

Local man throws out $10,000 challenge

A local philanthropist has thrown out a challenge. It's a challenge that could lead to $20,000 toward the Land Conservancy's effort to create the Pismo Preserve.

Richard Alberts of San Luis Obispo recently gave the Conservancy $10,000 with a note saying "Here's a little something to help with funding our effort for this preserve in Pismo". He also agreed to match all donations from the community up to $10,000.

There is a catch: Contributions must be received by April 1st in order to qualify for the dollar-for-dollar match. Alberts says he was inspired to do something to spur the community into action. He's been a longtime supporter of local land protection efforts.

The Land Conservancy must raise $11.7 million by August of this year to create the proposed Pismo Preserve. It would transform a 900-acre private ranch above Pismo Beach into a public open space as early as Summer 2015. It would be used for recreational opportunities like hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and bird watching.

Nearly $10-million has been requested from state agencies and regional funding sources, but the remaining $2 million gap leaves the project's future in the hands of the community.

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