BUTTE, NE – The Lower Niobrara NRD in Boyd County, announced today that it was awarded funding through a 2019 NACD technical assistance (TA) grant, made possible through a partnership with the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to build and strengthen technical capacity nationwide.
Lower Niobrara NRD will use the TA grant funding to help pay salary for an NRD Technician. The duties include assisting the Boyd County NRCS office with all aspects of getting conservation practices on the ground and inspecting those practices to insure they have been completed properly. The Technician is also available to assist the District staff with summer work.
“Having this technician has been a win-win for the District as well as the NRCS office,” said Terry Julesgard, General Manager of the Lower Niobrara NRD, “the NRCS office has been able to maintain customer service in a timely manner even though one of the full-time staff has moved to another office.”
NACD and NRCS established the Technical Assistance Grant Initiative in 2018 through a cooperative agreement to help conservation districts hire staff where additional technical capacity was needed to improve customer service and reduce workload pressure.
In 2018, NACD and NRCS awarded $9 million in funding to further enhance conservation district technical assistance across the nation. To date in 2019, NACD and NRCS have awarded grants totaling $9.9 million in 47 states and two territories, funding nearly 210 positions, including 10 tribe-related positions.
“Building and strengthening technical capacity on a grassroots level is crucial when it comes to local natural resources management,” NACD President Tim Palmer said. “Every acre and every district employee counts when it comes to the conservation puzzle, whether it’s a soil conservation technician, forester or program support specialist.”
“NACD is proud to help put more boots on the ground and offer support to bolster the important work conservation districts accomplish on America’s landscapes every day,” Palmer said.
Learn more about the technical assistance grants program on NACD’s website.
The National Association of Conservation Districts is the non-profit organization that represents the nation’s 3,000 conservation districts, their state associations and the 17,000 men and women who serve on their governing boards. For more than 70 years, local conservation districts have worked with cooperating landowners and managers of private working lands to help them plan and apply effective conservation practices. For more information about NACD, visit: www.nacdnet.org.