The Culpeper Soil and Water Conservation District (CSWCD) is a political subdivision of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Geographically it includes the counties of Culpeper, Greene, Madison, Orange, and Rappahannock. Founded in 1939 by citizens concerned about soil and water conservation, the CSWCD is the largest of forty-seven conservation districts within Virginia and serves an area covering 1,445 square miles with about 111,000 constituents.
A 12-member Board of Directors governs the District. Each county elects two directors in the general election every four years and two directors are appointed, one of which is a county extension agent.
The Board meets at 9:30 A.M. on the first Tuesday of each month, the location rotating among the five member counties. For meeting information, call (540) 825-8591, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Mission of the Culpeper Soil & Water Conservation District:
To promote the stewardship of soil and water and the conservation of our natural resources by educating and providing technical assistance to manage, protect, and enhance the land and water for the benefit and enjoyment of the citizens of Culpeper, Greene, Madison, Orange, and Rappahannock Counties.
The Vision of the Culpeper Soil & Water Conservation District:
To achieve clear, clean surface and ground water and improved soil conditions that enhance the intrinsic value of Culpeper, Greene, Madison, Orange and Rappahannock Counties.
These are some of the ongoing activities of the CSWCD:
Administer the Virginia Agricultural Best Management Practices (BMP) Cost-Share Program. Funded with state and federal funds, this incentive program is designed to improve the quality of state streams, rivers, and other water bodies through the implementation of BMPs. BMPs are designed to prevent soil erosion and minimize the introduction of nutrients, sediments, and toxins into water bodies. Sign-up for the program is on a continuous basis, and eligible applicants, once approved, may receive up to 75 percent of the BMP installation cost up to $50,000
Administer the Virginia Agricultural BMP Tax Credit Program. This program allows producers to take a 25% tax credit on their Virginia income taxes for their out of pocket expenses when BMPs are installed as outlined in an approved conservation plan.
Provide technical assistance. Technical assistance and information is provided outside of the cost-share program to all organizations, businesses, county governments, and individuals when requested. Information is available on soils, aerial photography, topographic maps, ponds, water management and protection, wetlands, grazing management for conservation and profitability, stormwater control, and many related topics.
Provide conservation planning for landowners and managers.
Host workshops, tours, field days, and provide educational programs and information to schools, the general public, legislators, and local governments.
Provide hands on classroom demonstrations and Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences for K-12 that correlate to the Virginia Standards of Learning.
Review site plans for erosion and sediment control and stormwater management and make site inspection for member counties.
Provide expertise and technical assistance for stream restoration projects.
Seek project grants for projects that improve soil and water quality.