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Local Work Groups in New Jersey

Local Work Groups focus on resource needs in these areas.Local Work Group meetings convene throughout New Jersey to encourage locally-led conservation in New Jersey. The locally led conservation effort is the foundation of the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) conservation program delivery process. Through these Work Groups, NRCS aims to gather recommendations on local natural resource priorities. These discussions help direct USDA conservation activities and programs that will coordinate with other Federal, State, tribal, and local conservation programs. This will help provide a coordinated effort to address conservation concerns specific to the local area.

Convened jointly by the local Soil Conservation District and the NRCS District Conservationists, the local work group responsibilities include:

  • Identifying the biggest conservation needs in our counties;
  • Prioritizing those conservation needs that can be addressed by USDA programs;
  • Recommending USDA conservation program application and funding criteria and focus of NRCS funding efforts;
  • Assisting NRCS with public outreach and information efforts; and,
  • Providing recommendations to the NRCS State Technical Advisory Committee based on resource data.

NRCS seeks a diverse membership from the local community with agricultural interests and an understanding of existing natural resource issues. Input from agricultural producers with crops, livestock, equine, and poultry; owners of nonindustrial private forest land; representatives of agricultural and environmental organizations; and representatives of governmental agencies carrying out agricultural and natural resource conservation programs and activities are encouraged to participate in local work groups. NRCS sets aside a portion of the Environmental Quality Incentives Program funds allocated to New Jersey to be directed to resource concerns identified and then prioritized by each local work group.

  • Central Jersey Local Work Group - This group focuses on natural resource needs in Middlesex, Monmouth, Mercer, Ocean, Burlington, and Camden Counties. The group is facilitated by the respective SCDs and the NRCS District Conservationist from Freehold and Columbus offices.
  • Northern Jersey Local Work Group – This group focuses on natural resource needs in Hunterdon, Somerset, Union, Warren, Sussex, Morris, Passaic, Bergen, Hudson, and Essex Counties. The group is facilitated by the respective SCDs and the NRCS District Conservationist from Frenchtown and Hackettstown offices.
  • South Jersey Local Work Group Meeting - This group focuses on natural resource needs in Cumberland, Salem, Gloucester, Atlantic, and Cape May Counties. The group is facilitated by the respective SCDs and the NRCS District Conservationist from Woodstown and Vineland offices.

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updated January 23, 2019