Cost Share Program

SWCD Cost Share Programs

  • State Cost Share: Through the state cost share programs landowners can request financial and technical assistance from their local Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) for the implementation of conservation practices. This program provides up to 75% of the total eligible costs of a practices that protect and improve water quality by controlling soil erosion and reducing sedimentation.
  • Some examples of practices that are eligible include: grass waterways, terraces, field windbreaks. The SWCD board of Supervisors approves or denies all state cost share contracts.
  • Greater Blue Earth River Basin Alliance: Funding is available for rock tile intakes and erosion control projects.
  • Watonwan County Comprehensive Water Plan: Funding is available for water quality projects for landowners and townships. A well sealing program is available that pays 50% up to $300 to have an abandoned well sealed. You must sign a contract before the well is sealed to receive cost share.

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Programs

  • Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP): EQIP provides technical assistance, cost share payments, and incentive payments to assist crop, livestock, and other agricultural producers with environmental and conservation improvements to their operations.
    • EQIP is a voluntary conservation program. Incentive payments may be made to encourage landowners to adopt management practices, such as nutrient management, manure management, integrated pest management, and wildlife habitat management.
  • Conservation Reserve Program (CRP): USDA Farm Service Agency's (FSA) Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is a voluntary program available to agricultural producers to help them safeguard environmentally sensitive land. Landowners receive rental payments and cost-share assistance to establish long-term, resource-conserving covers to improve the quality of water, control soil erosion, and enhance wildlife habitat. Contract duration is between 10 and 15 years. Sign up is during designated sign up periods.
    • For information on sign ups, contact your local FSA office.
  • Continuous CRP: Environmentally desirable land devoted to certain conservation practices may be enrolled at any time under CRP continuous sign up. If eligibility requirements are met offers are automatically accepted for a 10 to 15 year contract.
    • Continuous CRP is not subject to competitive bidding. Practices eligible for this program include riparian buffers, filter strips, grass waterways, and shelterbelts.

Note: To be eligible for cost share funding, the conservation practices must meet NRCS specifications.