State Conservation Program Awards More than $1,000,000 in Funds

(UNDATED) – The State Soil Conservation Board awarded more than $1,000,000 in funds Wednesday to the Clean Water Indiana Program. Receiving funds locally are Jackson and Scott counties.

This is a conservation match funding program that supports reducing pollutants in Indiana’s waterways through Indiana Soil and Water Conservation Districts and other conservation groups.

“The funds provided today for the 14 grant proposals will benefit local farmers in a multitude of ways,” said Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch, Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development. “These funds will directly provide technical assistance, support farmers in improving water quality and, in some cases, create jobs for rural Hoosiers.”

The Clean Water Indiana Program, was created by the legislature in 1999 and began awarding competitive grants in 2011. This program is funded mainly by a portion of the state’s cigarette tax revenue and has funded more than 140 projects since inception.

This year, 14 proposals representing 39 Soil and Water Conservation Districts and 2 conservation groups, were awarded funds which can be used in a variety of ways. One grantee could use funds to cost share on cover crop or livestock practices, while another grantee could use the funds to hire a staff associate. Grantees are encouraged to collaborate with neighboring counties and many will use this funding to leverage additional resources from outside organizations.

“Partnership is key to this program,” said Bruce Kettler, Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director. “Collaboration between groups like SWCD’s, soil conservation partners and farmers, will move the needle forward in preventing sediment and nutrients from entering Indiana’s vital waterways.”

In 2019, there were 2.2 million dollars requested from soil conservation organizations for this grant opportunity, showing how committed soil conservation groups are to increasing resources for landowners and improving water quality.

Larry Clemens, SSCB Chairman, believes these funds allow conservation partners to focus on local issues, as well as statewide challenges.

“The CWI program allows SWCD’s and other conservation partners to tailor conservation programs to local needs while addressing one of our most pressing statewide natural resource challenges, improving water quality,” Clemens said. “The SSCB is happy to partner with the grant recipients to advance conservation in Indiana.”

The following list includes the CWI grants that were awarded for 2019.

Lead Organization Partnering SWCD Award Amount 
Clinton Co. SWCDNone$33,000
Franklin Co. SWCDNone$15,884.50
Fulton Co. SWCDNone$106,827
Gibson  Co. SWCDAll Southwest IN SWCD’s$138,000
Huntington Co. SWCDWells$45,000
IASWCDNone    $44,500
Jackson Co. SWCDLawrence$40,000
Jay Co. SWCDBlackford$100,000
Montgomery Co. SWCDNone$90,000
Newton Co. SWCDJasper, LaPorte, Porter$50,000
Scott Co. SWCDLawrence, Washington  $120,000
SICIMNone$54,000
Vermillion Co. SWCDParke$60,000
Warrick Co. SWCDNone    $114,000

For more information, technical assistance or questions related to the CWI program, email cleanwaterindiana@isda.in.gov or visit www.in.gov/isda/2361.htm.

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