Thirty-eight Pollution Prevention Projects Funded through NPS Mini-grant Program

Chester County Conservation District’s Municipal Workshop project (funded in the 2020-21 NPS mini-grant round) includes a rain garden.

Pennsylvania’s county conservation districts were awarded over $60,000. With this funding, thirty-eight pollution reduction projects will take place in twenty-seven counties. These projects promote water pollution prevention activities through the Non-point Source (NPS) Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-Grant Program. The projects will take place through May 2022.

Funding for the grants, up to $2,000 each, is provided through the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. A description of the projects funded in the past is available at www.pacd.org under the Education tab.

Click here for the list with summaries of 2021-22 NPS Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grant projects and here for the press release. 

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New, Short Round of CREP Mini-grants Now Accepting Applications

PACD is now accepting mini-grant applications for up to $500 to implement virtual 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.

The guidelines and application for the new CREP mini-grant program for conservation districts are posted here. Questions should be directed to PACD Program Manager Holly Miller at hmiller@pacd.org.

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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Greene County Student Wins Second Place in National Poster Contest

In partnership with the NACD Auxiliary, the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) announced the winners of the 2020 Photo Contest and 2020 Poster Contest during the virtual 75th NACD Annual Meeting.

Congratulations to the second-place winner in the K-1 grade category, Payton Duncan of Greene County, PA!

The winners listed will receive cash prizes courtesy of the NACD Auxiliary, made possible by the Auxiliary’s quilt project proceeds; the Auxiliary Country Store at the NACD Annual Meeting; and the generosity of individual donors. All contest participants will receive a certificate of participation. View the winning photos and the winning posters on NACD’s Flickr page

Click here to read about the 2021 poster contest. 

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Save the Dates for PACD 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 18, 2021 | 10:00 a.m. to Noon
PACD North Central Region Video Conference

March 24, 2021 | 10:00 a.m. to Noon (New Date)
PACD South Central Region Video Conference

March 25, 2021 | 10:00 a.m. to Noon
PACD South East Region Video Conference    

March 30, 2021 | 10:00 a.m. to Noon
PACD South West Region Video Conference   

April 8, 2021 | 10:00 a.m. to Noon    
PACD North West Region Video Conference   

April 16, 2021 | 10:00 a.m. to Noon  
PACD North East Region Video Conference

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PACD Director of Operations Lisa Jo Suhr Retiring after 19 Years

PACD Announces Staff Changes

Best wishes to PACD’s longtime Director of Operations, Lisa Jo Suhr! Lisa is retiring after nineteen years with the association. A retirement Zoom will be held for Lisa on her last day, Friday, February 12, 2021, from 10:00 a.m.–11:00 a.m. Email Shannon Wehinger at swehinger@pacd.org for the link if you wish to drop in. If you cannot attend, well wishes can be emailed directly to Lisa at lsuhr@pacd.org before 3:00 p.m. on February 12.

PACD Program Manager Amy Brown will take over the Director of Operations position starting on February 15, 2021.

Holly Miller is PACD’s new program manager. Holly’s first day is February 8, 2021. She can be reached at hmiller@pacd.org

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Holly Miller Joins PACD Staff as Program Manager

By Holly Miller

Before joining the Harrisburg team, I worked with PACD as the Executive Assistant for the National Conservation Planning Partnership. Before that, I was the district manager for the Sullivan County Conservation District, working with district programs and operations.

I grew up on a farm in Luzerne County, where I became interested in agriculture and conservation and graduated from Bloomsburg University with a BS in Environmental Biology.

I enjoy hunting, fishing, art, and spending time with my husband, our beautiful daughter, and our dog.

I am very excited to work with conservation districts again, and I look forward to this new adventure!

 

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PACD Holds Executive Council Virtually

On Thursday, January 28, 2021, PACD held a virtual Executive Council Meeting. There were over 80 participants. During the meeting, the PACD Executive Council gave final approval for a bylaw change to move Armstrong Conservation District from the PACD South West Region to the PACD North West Region.

Also during the meeting, PACD Director of Operations Lisa Jo Suhr was recognized for her 19 years of service to the association, and board and partner reports were given.

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Farmer Focus Groups: Delaware Watershed

PACD seeks input from farmers and agricultural landowners from the Pennsylvania portion of the Delaware River Watershed about the USDA’s Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP). Focus groups will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on February 23 and 25, 2021. Farmers can participate in these discussions whether or not they have enrolled land in the program.

Please share this information with your farmer contacts in the Delaware Watershed.

All farmers who participate in the virtual focus group will receive $125 in return for their time. Registration is limited to 15 qualified farmers on a first-come, first-served basis.

If you are aged 55 or older, please register for the focus group on February 23 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.: https://bit.ly/pacd-de-1

If you are aged 54 or younger, please register for the focus group on February 25 from 5:00 p.m. to 7 p.m.: https://bit.ly/pacd-de-2

Questions? Contact PACD Director of Communications & Education Shannon Wehinger at swehinger@pacd.org.

Photo courtesy of USDA-NRCS.

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News from the Leadership Development Program

Share Your Success Stories and Planning Advice at the Board Leadership Series Forums

Conservation District Directors and Associate Directors – do you have some good news to share about a successful project in 2020? Then plan to join us for the Sharing Success Stories Director Forums on Monday, February 15, 2021, where you’ll get the chance to learn (and brag) about successful conservation district projects from around the state.

For directors at districts that have recently completed, or are considering, strategic planning plan to join us for the Strategic Planning Director Forums on Tuesday, February 23, 2021, where you’ll get the chance to network with other districts to share advice and insights on the planning process. Both Forums are scheduled as pairs, so you can choose to attend a Noon or 7 p.m. meeting according to your convenience. The 2021 Board Leadership series also features two presentations on ethical principles and conflict of interest, as well as an interactive planning workshop – click here for more information and to register. 

One Week Left to Register for 2021 Staff Conference

Conservation District Staff – there’s still time to register for the 2021 Virtual Staff Conference, scheduled for February 8–12, 2021. This year’s conference features a keynote on stress management; a two-part workshop on effective conflict management for conservation workers; a session on working with local media; technology forums focusing on productivity apps, video, and drones; and the first annual Conservation District Video Awards. Don’t wait. Register now

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.

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