On April 27, 2023, the Berks County Conservation District held a Legislative Breakfast with the Berks Farm Bureau. Approximately 60 folks attended the breakfast at the Berks County Agricultural Center in Leesport, PA. PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh was in attendance.
McKean County Conservation District Holds Legislative Luncheon
The McKean County Conservation District (MCCD) held its annual legislative luncheon on April 27, 2023, to celebrate Conservation District Week and to provide an update on its projects in 2022, including the Agricultural Conservation Assistance Program (ACAP) program.
Discussion was also held on the 2023-24 State Budget, invasive species, and the 2023 Farm Bill. “Partnership” seemed to be the running theme of the meeting. Examples were shown of having good partners, proof that we are stronger when working together.
PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh participated via Zoom.
Brenda Shambaugh Participates in Senate Committee Information Session
PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh participated in the Senate Environmental Affairs and Resource Committee information session on Chesapeake Bay issues. The session was held at the Farm Show Complex on January 12, 2023.
Click here to watch the session. Brenda’s comments begin at 1:03:08.
Cambria County Conservation District Holds Legislative Breakfast
On October 28, 2022, the Cambria County Conservation District held a legislative breakfast in Ebensburg, PA. District Chairman Dennis Beck and District Manager John Dryzal spoke at the event.
PACD 2nd Vice President Emil Bove represented PACD at the event.
Susquehanna County Conservation District Legislative Tour
Forty-eight individuals attended a legislative tour hosted by Susquehanna County Conservation District on September 8, 2022. Participating dignitaries included: Agricultural Secretary Russell Redding, Tom Williams with Senator Lisa Baker’s office, Susquehanna County Commissioner Elizabeth Arnold, Susquehanna County Commissioner Judith Herschel, and Representative Jonathan Fritz. PACD North East Region Director Chuck Gould (Monroe County Conservation District) represented PACD at the event.
Tour stops included Aldrich Homestead, a seventh-generation innovative dairy farm; Harford Farm and Flower Market, a Certified organic vegetable farm with 49 acres of farmland specializing in organic produce and flowers; and a dirt and gravel road project site.
Somerset Conservation District Holds Oven Run Ceremony
The Oven Run Acid Mine Drainage (AMD) Project Re-Dedication Ceremony was held on September 1, 2022. The tour highlighted the complete reconstruction of five AMD passive treatment systems on the Stonycreek River that will continue to be responsible for the historic improvement in water quality in the watershed. PACD 2nd Vice President Emil Bove (Westmoreland) represented PACD at Somerset Conservation District’s recent ceremony.
U.S. Senator Robert Casey, State Senator Patrick Stefano, PA Fish and Boat Commission Executive Director Tim Schaeffer, former Congressman John Murtha’s Chief of Staff John Hugya, representatives from the Department of Environmental Protection, and local conservation groups spoke during the event.
Conservation Districts Grateful for Budget Increase
Pennsylvania’s County Conservation Districts thank the Pennsylvania legislature for supporting conservation districts in the state budget.
Pennsylvania Conservation Districts assist landowners through technical assistance, permit reviews, site inspections, and education in a safe, efficient, and effective manner. The goal of conservation districts is to protect our natural resources, keep food on tables, and ensure public safety.
Through the efforts of the PA General Assembly, the “Transfer to the Conservation District” lines in the 2022-2023 Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture budgets were collectively increased by $6.8 million.
“The conservation districts play an important role in protecting the Commonwealth’s resources. By including an increase in the state budget for conservation districts, the
Pennsylvania General Assembly is investing in the conservation district mission of clean water and healthy soil for all Pennsylvanians,” said Brenda Shambaugh, PACD Executive Director.
As a result of the legislator’s actions, conservation districts will continue to review permits, assist farmers, assist municipalities in preparing to fix low-volume roads and dirt and gravel roads throughout the state and help control mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile Virus and Zika Virus.
Donna Fisher Testifies Before House Committee on MS4
Donna J. Fisher, District Manager of Blair County Conservation District and in partnership with the Blair County Intergovernmental Stormwater Committee, testified in Harrisburg regarding the MS4 (Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems) program.
Donna testified at the public hearing of the House Environmental Resources & Energy Committee on June 13, 2022. The Committee gathered testimony and input on MS4 compliance and House Bills 2153 and 2331.
Click here to read the full testimony and here to watch the video. (Donna’s testimony starts at 99:00.)
Brenda finished the testimony for Donna by providing the concluding comments.
Lebanon County Conservation District Holds Legislative Roundtable
The Lebanon County Conservation District staff met with local legislators on June 3, 2022. The meeting included a staff discussion on conservation programs in Lebanon County. These include agricultural land preservation, erosion and sedimentation control, Envirothon, mosquito-borne disease control, and agricultural programs. Conservation district funding, urban/suburban sprawl in the county, and the countywide Conservation Action Plan (CAP) were also discussed.
PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh also attended the event. Click here to read a news article about the event.
Tioga County Conservation District Holds Legislative Luncheon
On May 6, 2022, the Tioga County Conservation District held a legislative luncheon at the Tokishi Building in Wellsboro. While PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh, could not attend in person, she did attend via Zoom.