Residential Cost Share Program

Free Soil Testing for Lawns!

The Culpeper Soil & Water Conservation District is offering a limited number of free soil tests of lawns through 2021 while funding is available. Find out if/when you should use fertilizer or lime and what grass types would work best with your soil. For more info contact Stephanie DeNicola at  Click here for an article about the importance of soil tests for your lawn.

Virginia Conservation Assistance Program (VCAP)

Do you have a drainage issue in your yard? Would your garden benefit from a rain cistern? Would you like to minimize the amount of turf you mow? We have a program for you! VCAP offers 80% cost share to convert mowed turf to native plants, install rain cisterns that are 250+ gallons, install rain gardens to address drainage issues and more! For more information, visit: If you are in the Culpeper District’s 5 counties contact Richard Jacobs at 540-825-8591 or Click here for a fact sheet.

July 1, 2024: Cost share for Septic System Maintenance open to all Residential Properties in our 5 Counties! Click here!

Focused outreach continues for septic system maintenance in impaired watersheds that have a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Implementation Plan. Cost share is 50-80% of approved costs including pump out, repairs, replacements and new systems or drainfields. These watersheds include:

  • NEW: Mountain Run/Muddy Run/Lower Hazel: nearly all of Culpeper County except lands lying south of State Route 3, which drain directly to the Rapidan River, and areas north of Jeffersonton which drain directly to the Rappahannock River. The Hubbard Run area is also excluded.
  • Hazel River watershed: All of the Rappahannock County that drains to the Hughes, Hazel, Thornton, Covington and Rush Rivers, including all of Battle Run is eligible. This is essentially all of the county except a small area north of Amissville and the Flint Hill and north area. Also included in the project area are the Etlan and Nethers areas of Madison County and Culpeper County west of Reva, Griffinsburg and Monumental Mills.
  • Upper York River watershed: nearly all of the section of Orange County that is both south of Route 20 and east of US 15, except for very small areas along the county border with Spotsylvania and Louisa Counties.  Please call for specifics on any location.
  • Robinson River watershed: as it flows downstream from the new bridge at Clear (Mulatto) Run on Route 231, including all of White Oak Lake and White Oak Run areas all the way downstream to the Rapidan River. This includes Deep Run, Muddy Run, Crooked Run and their drainages.
  • Upper Rapidan River watershed:
  • more or less all the land in the north half of Greene County (north of US 33) that drains north or east to the Rapidan River; more or less all the land in southern Madison County that drains south or east to the Rapidan River; and most land in Western Orange County that drains north to the Rapidan River AND is west of US 15.  There are exceptions as this is an approximation.

These grants are focused on reducing any existing or potential impacts on local ground and surface water quality. E. Coli bacteria in some local streams has long been identified as being higher than expected by state water quality standards, although other pollutants can also be involved, particularly nutrients.  An additional benefit to the property owner is the assurance that their system is up to standards and functioning properly. It is a win-win for both water quality and property value.

All resident properties are eligible for the program regardless of owner income level.  Reimbursement payments are typically fifty percent for anyone although can go as high as eighty percent for individuals that qualify for low-income status. Maximum payments to property owners at the 50% cost share level are $200 maximum towards a pumpout; $2,000 maximum towards a pump out and inspection; $2,500 maximum towards a repair; $4,000 maximum towards a conventional system or $6,000 if a pump is required to move the liquids to the drain field; and $12,000 maximum towards an alternative engineered system. Maximum payments under low-income situations at the 80% cost share level are $320 towards a pumpout; $3,200 maximum towards a tank pump out and system inspection; $4000 maximum towards a repair; $6,400 maximum towards a conventional system or $9,600 if a pump is required to move the liquids to the drainfield; and $19,200 maximum towards an alternative engineered system.  Pump outs with an inspection extend the life of a system and prevent higher costs later on if the systems fail.  If further repairs are indicated by the pump out and inspection, the owner is still eligible for the repair payments.  Applications are required and need to be approved prior to the work being done or funding can be declined. Free assistance with initial assessments of individual system needs is available from the District. Reimbursement payments are made promptly once the work has been completed. The program is entirely voluntary and assistance from the District is free of charge.

Further information on the program is available from the District at 540-948-7531 or 540-825-8591.  Funding for these projects has been secured by the Culpeper Soil and Water Conservation District from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, Commonwealth of Virginia.

For more information, contact:

Culpeper: Cheyenne Sheridan at 540-825-8591 or

Other Counties: Henny Calloway at 540-948-7531 or


EPA Septic Smart:

Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project: Programs and Services for Homeowners