NRCS Awards Conservation Funds to Shenandoah RC&D
Richmond, March 2, 2012 – The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service has awarded $450,000 to the Shenandoah Resource Conservation & Development Council to help farmers install conservation practices to improve water quality in some of the state’s most productive agricultural counties.
If you own land in Rockbridge, Augusta, Rockingham, Shenandoah, Page, Warren, Frederick and Clarke counties, you can receive assistance to help you reduce erosion and excess nutrients on cropland and/or grazing lands. Available practices include cover crops, nutrient management, conservation tillage, prescribed grazing and access control.
Though program signup is continuous, deadlines for upcoming ranking periods are March 30, April 30, and May 31. Beginning, socially disadvantaged, and limited resource farmers will receive special ranking consideration, as will farmers in the Smith Creek watershed.
“The Shenandoah RC&D has been a major partner in helping provide funds and resources to Shenandoah Valley farmers,” says NRCS State Conservationist Jack Bricker. “This is the third award in three years under the Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative (CCPI), bringing USDA’s contributions in the watershed to nearly $1.9 million.”
Since 2009, NRCS has used CCPI funding to develop 50 contracts on 7,188 acres valued at nearly $1.4 million. To date, landowners have already received over $449,000 in payments as a result of these contracts.
"The Shenandoah RC&D Council is once again delighted to play a part in bringing additional conservation opportunities to the Valley's farmers,” says Joan Comanor, Chair of the Shenandoah RC&D. “We recognize there are many producers who want to practice good stewardship and these funds will go a long way toward enabling them to install new practices or build upon their current conservation efforts.”
Visit your local NRCS Office in Harrisonburg, Lexington, Strasburg or Verona to learn more about signing up for this CCPI funding.