USDA Farm Service Agency News Release
The Natural Resources Conservation Service, a division of the United States Department of Agriculture, is offering technical and financial assistance to farmers and ranchers to develop, install and implement authorized conservation practices. To receive assistance, the farmer or rancher must be in control of the land where practices will be applied, have an agricultural income of at least $1,000 per year and be willing to implement conservation practices of the duration of the contract and maintain such practices.
The following programs assist operators in implementing conservation practices:
• EQIP (Environmental Quality Incentives Program)
• WHIP (Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program)
• AMA (Agricultural Management Assistance)
• WRP (Wetlands Reserve Program)
• GRP (Grassland Reserve Program)
• CREP (Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program)
For a full description of program eligibility, visit pia.nrcs.usda.gov/programs, or contact the Ho`olehua Field Office at 4101 Maunaloa Hwy or 567-6868 ext. 105.
In 1962, Congress established a unique program within the U.S. Department of Agriculture that empowered rural communities to improve themselves while protecting and developing their natural resources. Local councils would provide direction, planning, coordination, and implementation of specific projects within their boundaries.
The focus on local direction and control has made Resource Conservation and Development one of the most successful rural development programs of the Federal Government. To date, three hundred eighty five RC&D areas have been authorized throughout the Country. Over 70,000 projects have been adopted nationwide since 1964, and more than 50,000 have been completed.
Hawaii’s four RC&Ds, cover all the major Islands. Through the leadership of Maui County’s five Soil and Water Conservation Districts and with assistance from the Soil Conservation Service, Tri-Isle RC&D Council, Inc., the oldest of the Hawaii RC&D areas, was established in 1970.
The Tri-Isle Council meets on a quarterly basis and is made up of a 15 member Board of Directors who bring a variety of backgrounds and professional expertise to the organization. The office staff includes the Executive Director, NRCS Coordinator, Administrative Assistant and Financial Assistant. The Council membership includes:
5 members from Maui County’s Soil and Water Conservation Districts 2 members from County Departments 8 at-large members from the community
RC&D provides a mechanism for local residents to work together and actively solve economic, environmental, and agricultural problems. We help utilize the abilities, knowledge and energy of local volunteers to get projects done. Interested groups may approach Tri-Isle for project sponsorship by submitting an application.