Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts

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Westmoreland Conservation District Holds Annual Engineers’ Workshop

Photo provided by WCD.

The Westmoreland Conservation District (WCD) recently held its annual Engineers’ Workshop. It attracted nearly 400 attendees from 18 counties and three states! Participants heard program updates from PA Department of Environmental Protection staff. They also learned about erosion and sediment control, riparian buffers, stream crossings, and other topics from WCD staff and guest speakers.

Click here for presentations from the event. 

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Pike County Conservation District Releases New Podcast Episode

Check out Season 2 Episode 3 of The Conservation Podcast by Pike County Conservation District, “The Dirt on Clean Fill.” What’s the difference between dirty dirt and clean fill? Kristina Heaney, District Manager at the Monroe County Conservation District, visits the podcast to discuss this issue.

The ⁠Form FP-001 Certification of Clean Fill⁠ referenced by Kristina can be found here on the PA Department of Environmental Protection’s website.

Click here to listen. 

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2024-25 Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Mini-grant Round Now Open

The 2024-25 round of the Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts is now open. This program will award up to $2,000 in funding to conservation districts to implement water quality and pollution prevention education programs for adult audiences.

This round offers a total of $32,000. Click here for guidance and the online application. The application period closes on April 30, 2024.

Contact PACD Director of Communications & Education Shannon Wehinger at with questions.

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.

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Lancaster County Conservation District Holds Annual Banquet

Lancaster County Conservation District Manager Chris Thompson speaks during the banquet. Photo taken by Brenda Shambaugh.

Recently, the Lancaster County Conservation District celebrated its 71st Annual Banquet, honoring conservation efforts in Lancaster County. Recipients were recognized for their contributions to conserving natural resources. The event also included an auction that directly supports the district’s Ann Brown Scholarship for high school seniors. PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh attended the event.

Award recipients included:

  • Watershed Project Award Recipients: Donegal Trout Unlimited, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, Unique Excavating, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • Building Industry Resource Conservation Award Recipients: Kinsley Construction, RETTEW, and High Associates
  • Conservation School Service Award: Frank Wasco

Click here to read a press release on the banquet. 

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2024 Watershed Congress includes Keynote on Conservation District Buffer Program

(Pictured at top) Brian Vadino, Montgomery County Conservation District, and Kent Himelright, Berks County Conservation District, provide the keynote address during the 2024 Watershed Congress.

The keynote presentation at the 2024 Watershed Congress was “The Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Local Conservation Districts, and You – Helping Achieve Pennsylvania’s Forest and Meadow Goals.” The keynote featured representatives from two Pennsylvania conservation districts discussing a PACD grant program that supports the creation of conventional riparian buffers, multi-functional riparian buffers, and lawn conversions. These programs were developed to help achieve Pennsylvania’s goal of planting 5,000 acres of upland forest and 5,000 acres of meadow by 2025.

The event was held on March 23, 2024, at the Montgomery County Community College, Pottstown, PA.

The speakers included Brian Vadino, Watershed Specialist for the Montgomery County Conservation District. Brian spoke about a project in the Perkiomen Creek Watershed that the districts completed through the PACD Riparian Buffer Sub-Grant for Conservation Districts program.

Kent Himelright, Watershed Coordinator for Berks County Conservation District, spoke about a riparian buffer project at Zartman Farm and a lawn-to-meadow conversion project at the Caernarvon Municipal Authority.

Click here to watch the presentation. 

Financial and other support for the Riparian Buffer Sub-Grant for Conservation Districts program 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.


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Franklin County Conservation District Holds Contractor Workshop

Franklin County Conservation District Engineer John High presents to the Spanish crowd with the help of a translator.

On March 18, 2024, the Franklin County Conservation District presented to over 60 local contractors. The presentation was divided into two groups: one in English and one translated into Spanish.

Topics included perimeter E&S controls, temporary/permanent seed mixtures, bonded fiber matrix, soil amendments, and failed Post-Construction Stormwater Management best management practices.

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Indiana Completes Multifunctional Riparian Forest Buffers

Pictured is the project along Cherry Run. Photo provided by Indiana County Conservation District.

Indiana County Conservation District planted seven multifunctional riparian forest buffers in Indiana County last year. The projects covered almost 13 acres and were paid for through PACD’s Multifunctional Riparian Buffer Sub-grant Program.

1.4 acres along Cheese Run = $2,555.97
0.91 acres along McCarthy Run = $1,972.48
0.74 acres along Cherry Run = $1,407.21
0.72 acres along Weirs Run = $927.30
3.5 acres along Leasure Run = $3,842.59
3.3 acres along Reeds Run = $6,109.69
2.25 acres along Reeds Run = $4,505.87

Click here to see more photos from the projects. 

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.

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Elk County Conservation District Issues Trash Challenge

For the fourth year, the Elk County Conservation District is challenging fellow PA conservation districts to pick up trash throughout April and May.

The district that picks up the most trash in their county is the winner. First, track the number of bags and weight of trash (if possible). Then, share your district’s photos and results on Facebook using the hashtags #ConservationCallout and #DistrictTrashTalking.

The winning district will be recognized during the July PACD/SCC Joint Annual Conference and receive the trash talker award (pictured) for the year. Washington County currently holds the trophy, which will be passed on to the 2024 winner.

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Registration Opens for Chapter 102 Basic Technical Training

Registration is now open for Chapter 102 Basic Technical Training May 20-24, 2024, at the Red Lion Harrisburg Hershey in Harrisburg, PA. Attendance is open only to conservation district and DEP employees working with Chapter 102.

The training is appropriate for individuals who are new or relatively new to their position, have never taken a similar training, would like a refresher, or would like guidance and skill enhancement for field inspections. The course curriculum assumes all participants have completed the prerequisite coursework on the Clean Water Academy.

There is no cost to register, most meals are provided, and a partial lodging reimbursement is available. The training is in-person only. Click here for additional information and to register. You will need to log into the Clean Water Academy (CWA) to access this link. Please contact Christopher Grimsley at if you need assistance accessing the CWA. All other questions may be directed to Molly Burns at

This training is funded through a grant from the PA Department of Environmental Protection and made possible through the cooperation of the PA Association of Conservation Districts and Pennsylvania’s conservation districts.

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New for Conservation District Week 2024: Instagram Photo Contest

Conservation District Week (April 28-May 4) is all about promoting conservation districts’ work across the Commonwealth. New for 2024, PACD is hosting an Instagram Photo Contest

How to participate:

  • Must post and select only one photo of conservation district staff at work each weekday during Conservation District Week: Monday, April 29; Tuesday, April 30; Wednesday, May 1; Thursday, May 2; and Friday, May 3. A different photo must be posted and tagged each day.
  • Must post photos on an official PA Conservation District Instagram account
  • Must use #CDWeek and tag @PAConservation in each post
  • By entering the contest, conservation districts are giving PACD permission to repost and use the photo entries
  • Winner will be the district with the most likes on their tagged photos – a total of all five photos posted for the contest April 29-May 3
  • The winning conservation district will receive a trophy (and bragging rights) at the PACD/SCC Joint Annual Conference in July

This contest is not sponsored, endorsed, administered by, or associated with Instagram.

Questions should be directed to PACD Director of Communications & Education Shannon Wehinger at


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