Between 1996 and 2007, voters approved almost $24 billion for local government park, open space, and other conservation purposes. Despite this substantial sum for land protection, there was at that time no book available to guide officials as they implemented voters' mandates. The Conservation Program Handbook was written in response to numerous requests to The Trust for Public Land for exactly this type of guidance from community leaders who wanted to know how to effectively conserve their iconic landscapes. In addition, in November 2008, despite massive doses of terrible financial news, voters across the U.S. approved land conservation funding measures. It was a record-breaking year for land protection financing, with voters demonstrating substantial support for open space ballot measures despite the economic and fiscal crisis of the time. The Conservation Program Handbook is a manual that provides all of the information-on a broad spectrum of topics-that conservation professionals are likely to encounter. It compiles and distills advice from professionals based on successful conservation efforts across the country, including a list of "best practices" for the most critical issues conservationists can expect to face. By providing information on how to do conservation work in the best possible manner, The Conservation Program Handbook has the goal of increasing the amount, quality, and pace of conservation being achieved by local governments throughout the nation.