Western Maryland Resource Conservation & Development (RC&D) Established in 1993
What is RC&D?
- Resource Conservation & Development
- Unique program that helps people protect and develop their economic, natural, and social resources to improve their areas economy, environment, and quality of life
- Provide a way for people to plan and implement projects to make their communities better places to live
- Brings together people, needs, concerns, opportunities, and solutions
- A process….as well as a program
- Provides “facilitated self-help” for conservation and economic development
- Provides the framework for dealing with issues through citizen participation
- Action-directed. It accomplishes what is planned and agreed to by communities, public and private organizations, and programs—all working together for a common goal
- Unique combination of private enterprise and federal assistance that encourages the blending of natural resources use with local economic and social values
- People’s Program!
What are the Benefits of RC&D?
- Designed to make communities more viable, productive, and better places to live
- Projects may create new jobs in agriculture, forestry, tourism, and other industries
- Projects may focus on natural resource issues, or may work to improve community development, economic growth, or quality of life in Western Maryland
Who can be involved?
- Anyone who……
- believes that one person can make a difference
- wants to be involved in making things happen in their community, county, region, or state
- wants to see natural resources utilized without adversely affecting the environment
- wants to improve the quality of life in their community
How can you get involved?
- You can make things happen!!
- People from all walks of life—there’s a place for YOU
- Doesn’t matter whether you live in the country or city
- Doesn’t matter if you’re a teacher, business or farm owner, homeowner, consumer, school council member
- Involvement or assistance
- Provide technical assistance or funding
- Most work is accomplished in committees
- Seek private citizens, businesses, and organizations to become members to participate, plan projects, or help identify priorities
- Your participation is WELCOME!
What are RC&D Sponsors
- Board of Commissioners (appoint qualified representative to serve on Council to represent their interests)
- Conservation Districts Board
- Cooperative Extension Service (County Level)
- Others may include:
- cities, townships, civic organizations, regional planning bodies, local non-profit organizations, Indian tribal bodies, special districts (i.e., conservancy), and others
What is an RC&D Council?
- Not-for-profit, tax-exempt organization within the state and are 501 (c)(3) entities by the Internal Revenue Service Determination
- This standing makes them eligible to secure grant funds from private foundations and others
- Councils are made up of people like YOU who want to “make things happen”
- Each RC&D sponsor appoints one representative and one alternate to serve on the RC&D Council
- cities, townships, civic organizations, regional planning bodies, local non-profit organizations, Indian tribal bodies, special districts (i.e, conservancy), and others
How is RC&D Funded?
- Received from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) through the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) for staffing and some additional financial support
- Support provides a coordinator to work with the Council to identify problems, establish goals and objectives, build strategies, and implement plans
- Provides a part time assistant, office space, some equipment, supplies, and a government vehicle for the staff
- Although we receive assistance from NRCS and other partnering agencies and organizations, the priorities and policies are determined by local people
- No additional federal dollars (other than competitive grants) for projects and activities
- Receive technical and in-kind assistance from NRCS & other USDA agencies and CDs for operations and many other partners-Tribes, private groups, private individuals, other governmental groups
What can RC&D do that others cannot?
- Unlike Conservation Districts, Cooperative Extension Service, NRCCS, and other County Organizations….RC&D Councils can:
- Partner rather than duplicate the efforts of other agencies
- Bring private enterprise to the table
- Work across jurisdictional, political, and other boundaries to address multi-county issues
- Diverse partners and private citizens & businesses to solve problems
- Another tool for these agencies to find resource to address local issues: examples
- Create a park, open a tourist attraction, work on multicounty water quality or weed control or issues, promote an industry or small businesses, provide funding for rural emergency medical services and equipment, preserve a historical site, develop a wildlife habitat, conduct workshops (e.g., alternative energy)….
What does a Coordinator do?
- Primary Role
- Serve as the liaison between USDA agencies & the RC&D Council and provides technical assistance to Council
- Assists Council to communicate plans and activities with potential partners
- Coordinates the writing of grants and the Council administers the grant
- Provides public information, develops information and educational programs
- Provides staff leadership regarding RC&D projects
- Act as a sounding board for ideas
- Assist council to develop step-by-step plans to reach goals