Greenville County Council on Tuesday, July 20, voted to provide $2 million over the next two years to support the newly-created Greenville County Historic and Natural Resources Trust.
The unanimous vote to approve $1 million in funding in the current budget and the 10-2 vote for an additional $1 million in next year’s budget was a stark reversal from council’s decision less than a month ago to reject all funding for the group.
The lack of funding in this year’s $319 million budget caught local environment groups and advocates by surprise, given that the formation of the trust itself passed with unanimous approval in 2020.
In response to last month’s decision, a group of advocates, community leaders, business owners and residents formed the Greenville Coalition for Greenspace.
“The Board will be left with the impossible task of protecting special historical and natural places in Greenville County without any funding,” the coalition wrote in the lead-up to council’s July 20 meeting.
The $2 million is still $8 million less than the trust was hoping to receive in support of land preservation initiatives.