The Arkansas Department of Agriculture is partnering with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to provide $309,172 in grants to 18 conservation districts across the state.
The grants must be used to carry out natural resource enhancement, restoration, or protection activities. A list of the conservation districts receiving grant awards in Arkansas may be found here.
“We appreciate the opportunity to share grant funding from the USDA NRCS with conservation districts across the state for activities that will further conserve and protect Arkansas’s natural resources,” said Wes Ward, Arkansas Secretary of Agriculture. “Even during this challenging time, our partnership with USDA and conservation districts remains strong and active, providing needed resources to Arkansans.”
The USDA NRCS awarded the Arkansas Department of Agriculture $866,044.66 for grants to conservation districts through the federal Grant to District program. In addition to the $309,172 in competitive grants, the award from NRCS included $290,000 in continued funding for two water quality technicians in Lawrence County. An application process for the remaining grant funds will be announced this summer for grants to be awarded in the fall.
Conservation districts are political subdivisions of the state of Arkansas for the purpose of conserving land and water resources. There are 75 conservation districts in Arkansas, each governed by a board of five directors who serve without pay. Two directors are appointed by the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission and three are elected by resident landowners.
The Arkansas Department of Agriculture also has released a new public service announcement promoting agriculture’s role during the COVID-19 pandemic.