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National Water Quality Initiative for Hilo Bay

Partial Landscape View of Hilo Bay WatershedFor over 75 years, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has provided agricultural producers with assistance to implement voluntary conservation practices that protect natural resources while maintaining production and profits.  Through the EQIP, National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI), the NRCS is offering financial and technical assistance to farmers, ranchers and forest landowners interested in improving water quality and aquatic habitats in approved priority watersheds.  NRCS will help producers implement conservation and management practices through a systems approach to avoid, control and/or trap agricultural land-based sources that may contribute to degradation of water quality in Hilo Bay. Qualified producers on eligible lands, in approved watersheds may receive assistance for installing conservation practices to address their water quality issues.  This may include, but is not limited to practices such as animal waste management systems, cover crop, residue and tillage management, grade stabilization structure, filter strips, nutrient management, integrated pest management, prescribed grazing and wildlife habitat management.  The local USDA, Natural Resources Conservation Service can assist you if interested in this EQIP water quality initiative program for approved watersheds in Hawaii county.

For More Information:

Kori Hisashima, District Conservationist
USDA, NRCS - Hilo NRCS Service Center
154 Waianuenue Ave, Rm 203, Hilo, HI 96720
Telephone: (808) 933-8353

FY 2015 NWQI Project Area

FY 2015 National Water Quality Initiative Project Area

FY 2015 Approved Watersheds

The following nine watersheds have been approved for participation in the NQWI for Hilo Bay.  

  • Waiaama Gulch
  • Waipahoehoe Gulch
  • Wailuku River
  • Honolii Stream
  • Kapue Stream
  • Waiakea Stream
  • Puumakaala
  • Olaa Forest
  • Puna Forest Reserve

Application Signup Deadlines and Application Ranking Periods:

Applications will be accepted on a continuous basis, however, an application period is established for purposes of evaluation, ranking, and funding decisions when received by the specified application cutoff period(s).  All eligible “High” and “Medium” priority applications received by the application cutoff will be ranked by May 15, 2015.  Selection for funding will be made on June 5, 2015.  “Low” priority applications will not be ranked. 

Application Cutoff Period #1: February 20, 2015

Additional signup periods(s) may be announced depending on available funding.

Obligation Deadline: June 26, 2015

Application Form and Screen Criteria Worksheet:

All eligible applications received by the application cutoff will be screened and an application priority determined using the FY2015 NWQI Screening Criteria Worksheet.

Ranking Summary:

All eligible applications with a “High” or “Medium” application priority will be ranked using the FY 2015 NWQI Hilo Bay Ranking Summary.

Practice Payment Schedule:

Applications that are selected for funding will receive payment rates according the appropriate Practice Payment Schedule for eligible practices as specified in the conservation plan.

Additional Information:

Links to Programs and Initiatives Included in National Water Quality Initiative


Pacific Islands Area NWQI Contacts:

Nicola Giardina
State Office Resource Conservationist (Programs)
Phone: (808) 541-2600 x 155
Email: Nicola.Giardina@hi.usda.gov