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NRCS 75 Years of Helping People Help the Land Display at Texas State Capitol

NRCS 75 Years of Helping People Help the Land Display at Texas State Capitol

Story by Melissa Blair

On April 27, 2010, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will celebrate its 75th anniversary of �helping people help the land.� In honor of the agency�s anniversary, NRCS will have a display and information table from April 22 to 27, at the Texas State Capitol in Austin, in the Capitol Extension E2, in the South Central Gallery.

Since its inception in 1935, the NRCS conservation delivery system has advanced a unique partnership with state and local governments and private landowners delivering conservation based on specific, local conservation needs, while accommodating state and national interests.

NRCS provides technical and financial assistance without a fee to farmers and ranchers, landowners, land managers to help them protect and improve the soil, water, plants, and animals on their property. NRCS works with these individuals to provide voluntary conservation planning on their property. The plans help landowners conserve, manage, and care for their land, crops, livestock and wildlife, by making improvements to farm and ranchland, creating and restoring wetlands, and improving wildlife habitat and grazing land.

Born out of the days of anguish and adversity of the Dust Bowl, NRCS, formerly Soil Conservation Service (SCS) has a long and distinguished place in Texas history of helping people help the land.

�The dust storms, eroded fields and overused rangelands of seven decades ago, have given way to a land of plenty,� said Don Gohmert, NRCS state conservationist. �This is a strong testament to the men and women of Texas who have worked the land, care for it and restored its bounty and beauty with the help of state agricultural colleges, universities, Extension and Research. NRCS is very proud to have been part of this legacy of conservation, stewardship and production so strongly embraced by the state�s farmers and ranchers.�

Last year alone, NRCS worked with private landowners to apply conservation practices on more than 16 million acres in Texas that helped them conserve and restore natural resources that provide a wealth of environmental benefits that reach far beyond the farm or ranch gate to all Texans -- productive soils for an abundant agricultural industry, clean air and water, recreational opportunities for hunting, fishing and nature photography.

NRCS is also working to revitalize rural communities by expanding economic opportunities for farmers and ranchers and investing in infrastructure that will stimulate rural economies, create jobs, and build a foundation for success in the 21st century economy. In implementing the new Farm Bill last year, NRCS invested more than $85 million through five conservation programs. Texas landowners matched NRCS� investment, bringing the total conservation investment in Texas to more than $170 million.

The booth will feature the NRCS �Helping People Help the Land since 1935� display and Governor Rick Perry�s proclamation recognizing NRCS 75th anniversary are on display along with several of the county proclamations declaring April 27 as �Conservation Day.�

The booth will feature the NRCS �Helping People Help the Land since 1935� display and Governor Rick Perry�s proclamation recognizing NRCS 75th anniversary are on display along with several of the county proclamations declaring April 27 as �Conservation Day.�