PACD Hiring Conservation Technician in Somerset Office

jobbuttonAs the Conservation Technician for the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts (PACD) in the Southwest Region, the incumbent will provide technical assistance to the Growing Greener program and the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS). This position will: Provide technical assistance to area partnership Growing Greener personnel and the NRCS in the planning, design and construction of engineering practices; Prepare designs of conservation practices and water quality best management practices, which are site specific and require coordination among various groups and individuals: and Provide engineering assistance in conducting preliminary investigations. Click here for the full job description.  Candidates must submit a resume and cover letter to the PACD at jobs@pacd.org. All application materials must be received by 4:30pm EDT on August 23, 2016.  

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Cambria Holds CREP Workshop on Weeds, Trees, and Pests

Images provided by Cambria County Conservation District.

On July 15, the Cambria County Conservation District hosted an Intro to Invasives: Weeds, Trees, and Pests workshop at Disasters Edge in St. Michael, PA. Genny Christ, Cambria County Conservation District, introduced those in attendance to invasive and noxious weeds in the Cambria County region. Tom Ford, Penn State Extension, talked all about herbicides and the best ones for invasive and noxious weed control. Ryan Davis, Pheasants Forever, explained to the group “What is CREP?” and how not all weeds are bad.
DEP left-rgb Financial and other support for the CREP Outreach Program Office Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a Growing Greener Watershed Protection grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and with additional support from USDA-NRCS.
 

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Five Pennsylvania Farms Receive Clean Water Farm Award

PACD presented the operators of five farms with the Clean Water Farm Award during its annual conference on July 27, 2016 in State College, PA. The honor is awarded annually to farmers who manage their daily farm operations in an environmentally conscious manner that helps to protect Pennsylvania’s water quality.
Left to right: PACD President Glenn Seidel, Acting Secretary of Environmental Protection Patrick McDonnell, C. Barclay Hoopes, Jr., Diana Hoopes, and Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Greg Hostetter. The Hoopes were presented with the Clean Water Farm Award on July 27, 2016. They were nominated by the Chester County Conservation District.

Left to right: PACD President Glenn Seidel, Acting Secretary of Environmental Protection Patrick McDonnell, C. Barclay Hoopes, Jr., Diana Hoopes, and Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Greg Hostetter. The Hoopes were presented with the Clean Water Farm Award on July 27, 2016. They were nominated by the Chester County Conservation District.

This year’s award recipients are:
  • South East Region: Barclay Hoopes (Chester County)
  • South West Region: James A. & Billie Cowell, Jr. of Frosty Springs Farm (Greene County)
  • North West Region: Elder Farms – Loren & Darren Elder (Lawrence County)
  • North Central Region: Allen & Linda Wehr Farm (Union County)
  • South Central Region: Randall & Sarah Patterson (York County)
The Clean Water Farm award was initiated in 1986. Recipients of the award are nominated by their local county conservation districts. Financial support for this award is provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection through the Chesapeake Bay Regulatory and Accountability Program and the Pennsylvania Chesapeake Bay Education Office (administered by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc.). Click here to read the entire press release.  

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PACD Honors Award Recipients during Annual Meeting

Conservation district staffs, state officials, and legislative partners convened in State College to honor conservationists during the PACD and State Conservation Commission’s 69th Joint Annual Conference. The awards luncheon took place July 27 at the Ramada Conference Center in State College, PA.
PACD President Glenn Seidel presents the Legislator Leadership Award to Representative Tommy Sankey during the PACD/SCC Awards Luncheon on July 27, 2016 in State College. Representative Sankey was nominated by the Clearfield County Conservation District.

PACD President Glenn Seidel presents the Legislator Leadership Award to Representative Tommy Sankey during the PACD/SCC Awards Luncheon on July 27, 2016 in State College. Representative Sankey was nominated by the Clearfield County Conservation District.

The 2016 PACD honorees are as follows:
  • Legislator Leadership Award

Representative Tommy Sankey (Clearfield)

  • President’s Award

Christopher Thompson (Lancaster)

  • Ann Rudd Saxman Conservation District Director Excellence Award

Kenneth Meck (Lancaster)

  • Conservation District Employee Excellence Award

Karl Kerchner (Lebanon)

  • Auxiliary Scholarship

Leah Wenhold (Lehigh)

Conservation District Employee Service Recognition Program Awards
  • 30 Years of Service

Donna Fisher, District Manager, Blair

Maryruth Wagner, District Manager, Columbia

  • 35 Years of Service

Ed Magargee, District Manager, Delaware

Greg Phillips, District Manager, Westmoreland

  • 40 Years of Service

Barry Travelpiece, P.E., Resource Conservationist, Columbia

Click here to read the entire press release.  

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New Round of CREP Mini-grants Now Accepting Applications

moneyclipartPACD is now accepting mini-grant applications for up to $2,500 to implement educational and outreach activities that support and extend the work of the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP). Projects should focus on CREP enrollment, re-enrollment and/or CREP maintenance. Due to limited funds, only 5-10 projects will be funded this round. The deadline to apply is August 19, 2016. Click here for the guidelines. The application for the new CREP mini-grant program for conservation districts is posted here. Questions should be directed to Shannon Wehinger at swehinger@pacd.org.
DEP left-rgb Financial and other support for the CREP Outreach Program Office Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a Growing Greener Watershed Protection grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and with additional support from USDA-NRCS.

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Allegheny, Blair, Lycoming & Montgomery Counties Receive Urban Agriculture Conservation Grants

NACD_Logo_LargerThe National Association of Conservation Districts, in partnership with USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, has awarded $2 million in grants to 42 conservation districts in 25 states to boost technical assistance capacity for urban agriculture and conservation projects. The 2016 grants will help urban farmers, community gardens, and other local agricultural partnerships implement conservation practices that support local food production, provide opportunities for education and stewardship, and protect natural resources. Congratulations to Allegheny, Blair, Lycoming and Montgomery County Conservation Districts on their grant awards! Click here for the full list of recipients.

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Berks Holds CREP Maintenance Workshop

Photo provided by Berks County Conservation District.

Photo provided by Berks County Conservation District.

Berks County Conservation District hosted a CREP maintenance workshop on June 18, 2016 at a farm in Wernersville, PA. Mena Hautau, Penn State Extension, shared her knowledge of invasive weeds and weed identification. In the above photo, Mena is highlighting garlic mustard, which was found growing in the CREP buffer site along with several other invasive weeds.
DEP left-rgb Financial and other support for the CREP Outreach Program Office Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a Growing Greener Watershed Protection grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and with additional support from USDA-NRCS.

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Farm Bureau Holds Annual Tour in Wayne County

Submitted by Heidi Ferber, Nutrient Management Specialist, Wayne County Conservation District
The annual PA Farm Bureau Tour stopped at the Brian Smith Farm. Photo provided by Wayne Conservation District.

The annual PA Farm Bureau Tour stopped at the Brian Smith Farm. Photo provided by Wayne Conservation District.

The Pennsylvania Farm Bureau held their annual farm tour in Wayne County this year. The tour brings together Farm Bureau members, PA Department of Environmental Protection personnel, and staff from conservation districts. The group visited the farm of Brian Smith, Bill Bryant’s Highland Farm, and the Calkins Creamery. Brian Smith’s farm suffered an incredible tragedy a few years ago when he lost his barn to a fire. The farm has changed its management style with the barn rebuild and features a bedded pack system. Conservation measures include no-till corn, cover cropping, rotational grazing, milkhouse waste water system, and stabilized lanes. The bedded pack is incorporated twice a day and cleaned and rebedded twice a year. Bill Bryant’s Highland Farm is a 6th generation family farm. The farm signed on as a conservation district cooperator in 1962 and has completed an amazing amount of conservation practices. They rotationally graze the dairy cows, have a watering system, stabilized laneways, streambank fencing, heavy use area protection, no-till cropping, and cover crops. Daughter Emily started the Calkins Creamery and it has become very successful. The cheese is sold at the farm, in local stores, at farmers markets, and shipped nationwide. In honor of Bill’s late son, there is an annual 5K race – Herd the Curd – that runs all over the farm pastures and fields. Highland Farm participated in the Four County Interseeder Demo this past June. His interseeded cover crop is germinating in less than one week. There will be a Corn Trials Field Day on September 14th and all are welcome to attend. Lunch was held at the historic Calkins Grange and prepared by the Calkins 4-H Clubs. This building is completely original and the Articles of Incorporation still hang on the wall over 100 years later.

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Conservation Districts in North East Hold Interseeder Demonstration

Chris Houser of Interseeder Technology plants covers crops into standing corn in Monroe County.

Chris Houser of Interseeder Technology plants covers crops into standing corn in Monroe County.

Lackawanna, Monroe, Susquehanna, and Wayne County Conservation Districts recently held an Interseeder Demonstration Day in each of their counties. Chris Houser and Greg Roth from Interseeder Technologies brought the interseeder to northeastern Pennsylvania as part of a four-county effort to educate the farming community on the benefits of starting cover crops early. Fourteen farmers located across the four counties participated in the events. At each location, four different cover crop/cover crop mixes were used, each covering roughly a quarter acre. The cover crops were Annual Rye, Crimson Clover, Rye/Crimson Clover Mix, and T.A. Seeds Indy Mix (Rye, Clover, and Tillage Radish). This project was part of a Lackawanna, Monroe, Susquehanna, and Wayne County non-point source pollution grant.
epa_logo (2) 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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Water Quality Improving on Warrior Run

NorthumberlandFish

Photo provided by Northumberland County Conservation District.

On June 5, 2016, a local angler caught this 19” trout on a fly rod in Warrior Run in McEwensville, PA. The fish was caught a few hundred yards downstream from a streambank restoration project completed by the Northumberland County Conservation District in May 2010. The project was funded through the PA Department of Environmental Protection’s Growing Greener grant program (Northcentral PA Conservancy was the grant recipient). The angler feels that the stream is cooler and cleaner as a result of the restoration project.

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