Acceleration of Minnesota Conservation Assistance

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$313,000
2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$312,000
Fund Source
Environment & Natural Resources Trust Fund
Recipient
BWSR
Recipient Type
State Government
Status
Completed
Start Date
July 2011
End Date
June 2013
Activity Type
Education/Outreach/Engagement
Grants/Contracts
Restoration/Enhancement
Technical Assistance
Counties Affected
Statewide
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 04l
Appropriation Language

$313,000 the first year and $312,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the Board of Water and Soil Resources to provide grants to soil and water conservation districts to provide technical assistance to secure enrollment and retention of private lands in federal and state programs for conservation.

2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$313,000
Other Funds Leveraged
$216,000
Direct expenses
$313,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
8
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 04l
Appropriation Language

$313,000 the first year and $312,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the Board of Water and Soil Resources to provide grants to soil and water conservation districts to provide technical assistance to secure enrollment and retention of private lands in federal and state programs for conservation.

2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$312,000
Direct expenses
$312,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
8
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Project Overview

PROJECT OVERVIEW
Enrollment of private lands in conservation programs can provide important natural resource and other public benefits by taking the lands out of production so that they can provide various wildlife and ecological benefits. This appropriation is enabling the Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources to provide grants to local soil and water conservation districts for employment of technical staff to assist private landowners in implementing conservation programs. This effort is expected to assist with the enrollment, retention, and management of 30,000 private acres of grasslands, wetlands, and forests in federal and state conservation programs, particularly in areas expected to lose enrollments in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP).

OVERALL PROJECT OUTCOME AND RESULTS
This project accelerates the implementation of conservation programs on private lands. Numerous programs and funding sources exist or are being developed to implement conservation practices on private lands. This project provides the one on one link with landowners to identify programs and see them to completion. Accelerated staffing was accomplished by contracting with Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCD) who have a local connection with landowners. Experience has shown this level of service is required as programs are complex and competing land use changes are pulling in the opposite direction. Landowners have no shortage of options in managing their land. Assuring sound conservation practices that benefit water quality and wildlife habitat are part of that plan is a fundamental goal of this project. As Minnesota's agricultural landscape continues to change with even fewer grassland and wetland acres resulting from the expiration of CRP contracts it is ever more important that we slow this progression and work to retain the most critical areas with renewed contracts or easements. This project has paid to directly employ 10 full time equivalent positions within SWCD offices. In addition, this project leverages an added 9 positions funded by other sources from DNR, BWSR and SWCD's. Work affecting more than 54,000ac.was accomplished by this project, greatly exceeding the original goal of 30,000ac. This includes 10,300 acres of riparian protection, 10,000 acres of wetland restoration Projects, 23,100 acres of grassland protection, 11,900 acres of grassland management.

PROJECT RESULTS USE AND DISSEMINATION
Data is collected on staff time spent, acres impacted and landowners contacted on a quarterly basis and is available to the project partners and participants. The overall status of conservation programs in MN is available at www.bwsr.state.mn.us/easements/coenrol.xls.

Project Details
Project Manager
First Name
Tabor
Last Name
Hoek
Organization Name
Board of Water and Soil Resources
Street Address
520 Lafayette Rd N
City
St Paul
State
MN
Zip Code
55155
Phone
(507) 537-7260
Email
tabor.hoek@state.mn.us