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Watershed Protection Grants Awarded to Farmer Groups
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 01/13/2021

Wisconsin's latest round of Producer-Led Watershed Protection Grants has been awarded to 30 groups of farmers who will work with conservation agencies and organizations to address soil and water issues tailored to their local conditions.

Grants funding ranges between $6,200 to $40,000 to be used for incentives for farmers to plant cover crops and undertake other conservation practices and technologies.

This is the sixth round of grant awards since the funding was made available five years ago.

Producer groups must work with DATCP, the Department of Natural Resources, a county land conservation committee, the University of Wisconsin-Extension, or a nonprofit conservation organization. Grant funds cannot pay for real estate, loans, equipment purchases, or lobbying, and the program places caps on the amount of funding that can be used for staff support to the groups. Each group must start with at least five farmers in the watershed.

Producer-Led Watershed Protection Grants are intended to give financial support to farmers willing to lead conservation efforts tailored to their own watersheds. The emphasis is on innovation and practices not already covered by other state and federal programs, and the intent is that participating farmers will reach out to other farmers to help them adopt conservation practices.

First time grant recipients include Biological Farming Friends, Central Wisconsin Farmers' Collaborative, and Lake Wisconsin Farmer Watershed Council.

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