Under its Establishment Act, NFWF is authorized by Congress, among other things, “to receive and administer restitution and community service payments, amounts for mitigation of impacts to natural resources, and other amounts arising from legal, regulatory, or administrative proceedings, subject to the condition that the amounts are received or administered for purposes that further the conservation and management of fish, wildlife, plants, and other natural resources.” (16 U.S.C. §3703(c)(1)(K).)
The IDEA department executes this function at NFWF to support the work of federal, state, and local governmental entities in their environmental enforcement and mitigation activities. In this role, IDEA seeks to facilitate the efficient and effective management and deployment of enforcement and mitigation dollars to benefit fish, wildlife, plants, and other natural resources impacted by activities that are subject to governmental enforcement or regulatory proceedings.
IDEA offers stakeholders:
- The confidence of working with a Congressionally-chartered foundation, specifically authorized to receive and administer enforcement and mitigation monies to “further the conservation and management of fish, wildlife, plants, and other natural resources” of the United States (National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Establishment Act, 16 U.S.C. §3701 et seq.).
- Credibility of partnering with a trusted third party. NFWF has worked diligently for over a quarter century to establish its proven track record of accountability, efficiency, and effectiveness as a fiduciary agent and administrator of enforcement and mitigation-derived conservation funds.
- Financial management expertise, including investment of funds held while awaiting disbursement to eligible projects and activities. IDEA maintains relationships with a variety of external investment advisors who assist in the development of investment strategies to meet the policies and objectives established by governmental partners.
- Robust grantmaking, accounting, reporting, and audit systems that ensure funds are tracked, obligated, and disbursed to their intended purposes.
- Experience in conducting Requests for Proposals to identify appropriate projects and activities to receive funding.
- Departmental management and oversight by a group of experienced attorneys with expertise in federal and state environmental law; environmental enforcement; environmental mitigation; finance; and nonprofit corporate operations.