HARRISBURG – Those who control water pollution in local streams, rivers and lakes are facing funding cuts under the House of Representative’s budget.
The Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts Inc. (PACD) is urging the general assembly to restore $1.1 million in funding to the county conservation districts.
The staff members at local county conservation districts’ offices work directly with community members to prevent pollution and ensure enough clean water for future generations.
“They know the local area and what causes the biggest pollution problems,” states a PACD press release.
“Their goal is to address these problems by working together with community members to make sure drinking water is safe, streams are clean and nature is protected.”
However, the House proposed budget for fiscal year 2017-18 significantly cuts conservation district funding from current levels. The cuts are as follows:
House Department of Agriculture Budget
- Transfer to the Conservation District Fund: $739,000 ($130,000 less than current fiscal year)
- Transfer to the Nutrient Management Fund: $2,307,000 ($407,000 less than current fiscal year)
House Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Budget
- Transfer to the Conservation District Fund: $2,130,000 ($376,000 less than current fiscal year)
- Chesapeake Bay Agricultural Source Abatement: $2,423,000 ($222,000 less than current fiscal year) This fund is used to match federal dollars, mostly for DEP staffing.
PACD asks the General Assembly to restore this “pass through funding” to the conservation district line items through the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to the levels in the current 2016-17 budget.
The Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts Inc. (PACD) is a non-profit organization whose guiding values include: Sustainable Resource Conservation; Integrity, Local; Education and Outreach; and Partnerships.
PACD primarily serves as the collective voice for Pennsylvania’s 66 county conservation districts. For more information about PACD, visit www.pacd.org.