Conservation Districts Meet with House Agriculture Committee

(Left to right): PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh, McKean County Conservation District Manager Sandy Thompson, Blair County Conservation District Manager Donna Fisher, and Lancaster County Conservation District Manager Christopher Thompson speak at a meeting of the PA House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee on November 20, 2019. This image is a screenshot from the livestream at www.repcauser.com.

On November 20, 2019, representatives from the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. (PACD) met with the PA House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee. The majority committee chair is Rep. Martin Causer (R-Cameron/McKean/Potter) and the minority committee chair is Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski (D-Luzerne). The informational meeting discussed the operations and activities of the county conservation districts.

Presenters included PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh who explained why conservation districts were created. Lancaster County Conservation District Manager Christopher Thompson spoke about interaction between conservation districts and the agricultural community. Blair County Conservation District Manager Donna Fisher spoke about stormwater concerns. McKean County Conservation District Manager Sandy Thompson gave an overview of the Dirt and Gravel/Low Volume Road Program in PA.

Click here to read the press release.

Continue Reading No Comments

PACD/SCC Winter Meeting Registration Opens

Conservation district staff, board members, and partners are invited to attend the 2020 PACD/SCC Winter Meeting January 22-23 at its new location, the Wyndham Garden State College. Take in the Wyndham’s beautiful winter views and enjoy a hot beverage with your counterparts from across the state. Conference learning opportunities include educational opportunities through the Pennsylvania Game Commission and a program on effective conservation messaging. Beat cabin fever and join us in State College! Click here for details and to register.

Continue Reading No Comments

Intro to Conservation Planning Training Held

NRCS Resource Conservationist Gwendolyn Crews wraps-up the Intro to Conservation Planning training on November 14, 2019.

Twenty-eight students completed the Intro to Conservation Planning Course in Grantville, PA, November 12-14, 2019. The training was targeted to entry-level conservationists and included classroom and field experience. The students were introduced to the conservation planning process in Pennsylvania.

Participants attended the three-day training free of charge thanks to the generous sponsorship of the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and the State Conservation Commission. PACD provided administrative support for the course.

Continue Reading No Comments

First Project Completed through Multi-functional Riparian Buffer Sub-Grant Program

Indiana County Conservation District (ICCD) completed its first multi-functional riparian buffer planting in the headwaters of Aultman’s Run watershed this year. ICCD staff partnered with Western Pennsylvania Conservancy and volunteers from Pennsylvania Senior Environmental Corps to plant 1.2 acres of riparian trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.

ICCD developed a site-specific planting plan for the property that accounted for property use, hydrology, soil, and utility rights-of-way. With approval from the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, ICCD was able to utilize $2,502 in PACD Multi-functional Riparian Buffer funds to make it happen.

Click here to learn more about the Multi-functional Riparian Buffer Sub-Grant Program.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Recreation and Conservation.

Continue Reading No Comments

PACD Executive Board Meets in Harrisburg

On November 6, 2019, the PACD Executive Board met at the PACD office in Harrisburg. In addition to the business meeting, the board participated in a leadership development workshop,* and a review of PACD financials.

*Financial and other support for the Building for Tomorrow Leadership Development Program is provided through a grant from the Pennsylvania State Conservation Commission. Guidance for the Program is provided through the Pennsylvania Conservation Partnership’s Leadership Development Committee.

Continue Reading No Comments

Save the Dates: Spring Region Meetings

Mark your calendar and join us for the PACD spring region meetings!

The region meeting dates and locations are as follows:

March 24, 2020
PACD South Central Region Meeting
Cumberland County Conservation District, Carlisle, PA

March 26, 2020
PACD North Central Region Meeting
Clinton County Conservation District, Mill Hall, PA

March 31, 2020
PACD South West Region Meeting
Westmoreland Conservation District, Greensburg, PA

April 3, 2020
PACD North East Region Meeting
DEP Northeast Regional Office, Wilkes-Barre, PA

April 22, 2020
PACD North West Region Meeting
Venango County (location TBA)

April 30, 2020
PACD South East Region Meeting
Henning’s Market, Harleysville, PA

Continue Reading No Comments

Registration Now Open for 2020 Building for Tomorrow Staff Conference

Registration is now open for the 2020 Building for Tomorrow Staff Conference, scheduled for February 12 & 13 at the Wyndham Garden State College. The conference is open to all conservation district staff and will feature keynote sessions on Productive Conflict & Emotional Intelligence and Strategies for Time Management. Other sessions will include information on records retention, prevailing wage, environmental education, project management, multifunctional buffers, and agriculture/community outreach.

Click here to view the agenda and for more information.

Financial and other support for the Building for Tomorrow Leadership Development Program is provided through a grant from the Pennsylvania State Conservation Commission. Guidance for the Program is provided through the Pennsylvania Conservation Partnership’s Leadership Development Committee.

Continue Reading No Comments

York County Conservation District Completes Low Volume Road Project

Before and after photos provided by York County Conservation District.

The York County Conservation District completed a low volume road project in Wrightsville Borough. The cost of the project through the Dirt, Gravel, and Low Volume Roads Program was $37,280.

The project started as an alley that caused runoff and flooding of nearby homes. The district installed 650 feet of concrete wheel pads, pervious pavers, and subsurface stone storage. Now, the stored rainwater seeps into the subsoil, and excess runoff drains to the storm sewer.

Click here to watch a video titled, “What is a Green Alley?” 

Click here to view a local news story on the project.

Continue Reading No Comments

Northampton County Conservation District Holds Teacher Workshop

Northampton County Conservation District’s Act 48 teacher workshop visits Kline Farm’s cheese operation. Photo provided by NCCD.

The Northampton County Conservation District held an Act 48 workshop, Agriculture and You, to educate teachers. The teachers were able to observe agricultural practices that improve water quality. The program introduced local educators to nutrient and manure management, non-point source pollution control, and environmental conservation practices implemented on Lehigh Valley farms.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Continue Reading No Comments

Chapter 102 Fall Regional Sessions Conclude

Department of Environmental Protection’s Environmental Group Manager Nathan Crawford, P.E., opens the final Chapter 102 Fall Regional Session in Dauphin on October 31, 2019.

On October 31, 2019, the sixth and final Chapter 102 Fall Regional Session was held in Dauphin, PA. The series of regional training was presented by the PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) with administrative support from PACD.

The training included program updates, the Regional Permit Coordination Office, completeness reviews, and the Clean Water Academy.

The next Chapter 102 trainings will be:

March 16-19, 2020
Spring 102/105 Basic Technical Training
Wyndham Garden State College, Boalsburg, PA

March 31-April 2, 2020
Spring 102/105 Topic-based Technical Training
Wyndham Garden State College, Boalsburg, PA

Continue Reading No Comments