CPESC Review Course – Harrisburg, PA

The Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts (PACD) is sponsoring a Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control (CPESC) Review Course on September 26, 2017 at the Red Lion Hotel Harrisburg Hershey, Harrisburg, PA.

The CPESC certification is a professional designation for erosion and sedimentation technicians, engineers, and other specialists involved in design, construction, inspection or other aspects of erosion and sedimentation control. If you have not yet started the CPESC certification process, we recommend you go to the Envirocert International, Inc. website and review the requirements and process now.

The review course is designed to ensure CPESC applicants understand what concepts will be covered by the exam and acts as a review for most of those concepts. See the flier for more information on the review course and a link to information on the complete certification and exam process. Note that there is special pricing for PA conservation district staff. Before registering, contact Terry Fisher at tfisher@pacd.org for a district staff discount code or with any questions.

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Registration for the 2017 PACD/SCC Joint Annual Conference Opens Today

Help us mark the 70th anniversary of the Joint Annual Conference July 12-13 at the Red Lion Harrisburg Hershey in Harrisburg, PA. With timely informational sessions and a soil health tour at beautiful Hershey Farms, you won’t want to miss this conference! The new conference location is outside of the city and easily accessible. Look for feature articles in upcoming issues of Front Page for more details about the tour and other conference activities. Click here to register, and for more information.


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Intro to Conservation Planning Training Concludes

Photo caption: Duane Miller, Praedium Ventures, instructs the class.

Twenty-two students attended the Intro to Conservation Planning training in Grantville, PA. The training was held May 16-18, 2017. The three days consisted of a mix of classroom learning and field experience.

The training was made possible by USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and the State Conservation Commission. Administrative support was provided by PACD.


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Conservation Districts Represented at 2017 PSATS Conference

Lance Bowes staffs the conservation district booth.

District volunteers helped at the conservation district table at this year’s PA State Association of Township Supervisors (PSATS) Conference from Sunday, April 23, through Tuesday, April 25. About 4,000 township officials from across the Commonwealth attended the three day event.

The primary focus of the district exhibit was to share information about conservation district programs and initiatives that affect local townships. The district volunteers helped build new relationships and reinforce existing relationships with township officials.

Thanks to Morgan Schuster, Michele Ulmer, and Lance Bowes (pictured) for their help at the conference.

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District Educators Attend the PAEE Conference

Tabletop stormwater best management practices demonstration given by Katy DeMent, Pittsburgh Center for Creative Reuse; Mandi Lyon, Carnegie Museum of Natural History; and Mary Ann Steiner, Steiner Learning Design. Photo by Brittney Coleman.

PACD awarded seven scholarships for conservation district environmental educators to attend the PA Association of Environmental Educators (PAEE) Conference March 13-14, 2017, at the McKeever Environmental Learning Center in Sandy Lake, PA.

“It was terrific to participate in a program that included so much diversity in terms of ages of participants/ideas/activities. The conference was well rounded, creative and comprehensive” said Jolie Chylack, the Lehigh County Conservation District’s Environmental Education and Outreach Coordinator.

The annual two-day conference featured respected speakers, seminars, workshops, and learning experiences covering a wide range of environmental topics. The scholarships gave district educators the opportunity to learn new techniques, discover the latest tools and materials available to them, and to network with other environmental educators from across the state.

The scholarships were made possible through an Environmental Education Grant from the PA Department of Environmental Protection.

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Chesapeake Bay Staff Meeting Wrap-Up

Rich Batiuk, Associate Director for Science, Analysis and Implementation, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Chesapeake Bay Program Office, discusses best management practice verification on March 13, 2017.

The 2017 Chesapeake Bay Program Conservation District and PA Agency Staff Meeting was held on Monday, March 13, 2017 at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA. Over one-hundred, seventy-five people attended the meeting to hear about current topics related to the Bay and to network with colleagues.

Presenters from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), and various conservation districts, discussed topics such as best management practice (BMP) verification, the Phase III Watershed Implementation Plan, and PracticeKeeper software. A lot of discussion focused on the current farm inspections with an open forum session that encouraged questions on the topic. Three conservation districts also shared their experiences and lessons learned about the farm inspection. Maybe the most popular session, however, was one that provided a completely different perspective on some of the topics. During this session, three farmers from Bradford County talked about how they view the inspections and what district and DEP support would be helpful to them.

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2017 PSATS Conference – Volunteers Needed

Close to 4,000 township officials and guests from all over Pennsylvania will attend the annual Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors (PSATS) Conference and Trade Show. Once again there will be a Conservation District Booth at the show.

Trade Show dates and times are

  • Sunday 4/23 Noon – 5:00 pm
  • Monday 4/24 7:30 am – 4:00 pm
  • Tuesday 4/25 7:30 am – 1:30 pm

Please consider volunteering for a morning or afternoon shift at the conservation district booth. It’s a great way for district staff to reinforce existing relationships and start building new ones with local township officials. It’s also an opportunity to promote the districts and explain the type of programs and work they do. Contact Sandy Austin at saustin@pacd.org or 717-238-7223 to volunteer.

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2017 Farm Show Concludes

PACD Director of Operations Lisa Suhr staffs the conservation district booth at the Farm Show on January 7, 2017.

Conservation district volunteers had the opportunity to share about the work conservation districts do in their local communities to conserve the state’s natural resources. Five-hundred, forty-six visitors stopped by the Conservation District Farm Show booth during the eight day event that concluded on January 14. The Farm Show attracts people from across Pennsylvania, drawing visitors to the district booth from sixty one different counties, a few from other states, and even one from New Zealand.

Conservation district facts and contact information were handed out. Visitors also had the opportunity to identify and learn about the watershed they live in by marking their home location on a state map and receiving a fact sheet about their watershed. Other information available during the show included Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program materials, agricultural requirements brochures, and Manure Management Manuals.

A huge thank you is extended to each conservation district that donated staff time to make the show a success. A lot of work goes into preparing and staffing the booth and it would not be possible without the district volunteers.

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Registration is Now Open for the Chesapeake Bay Program Meeting

Photo credit: NASA/USGS/Landsat 5

The 2017 Chesapeake Bay Program Conservation District and PA Agency Staff Meeting will be held on March 13, 2017 at the Elaine Langone Center, 2nd Floor, Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA (snow date March 16). To view the day’s schedule, agenda, and to register click here or go to the “Events” tab at www.pacd.org.

Staff from PA state agencies, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, conservation districts, and other organizations working within the Chesapeake Bay are invited to attend. There is no cost to attend, but registration is required. Breakfast, break, and lunch are included and will provide ample time to network with other Bay professionals. See the agenda for a complete listing of sessions and topics to be covered.

Contact Terry Fisher at tfisher@pacd.org with any questions.

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Winter Meeting Early Bird Discount Deadline Extended to January 6

January 6 is the last day to take advantage of the early bird discount and save up to $20 on registration for the PACD/SCC Winter Meeting. PACD statewide meetings are a great opportunity to network with fellow districts, participate in statewide policy decisions, and take in timely sessions.

Join us in January and learn about potential Growing Greener III legislation, conservation priorities for the next Farm Bill, and how the PACD Legal Advice Program can work for your district.

If you miss the early bird deadline, you can still register for the meeting anytime through January 17. Click here for registration and meeting information. We look forward to seeing you there! 

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