The National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) applauds leaders of the Senate Agriculture Committee for recognizing the significant value of conservation in supporting America’s long-term environmental and economic stability. In language released in the Title II framework, Agriculture Committee leadership demonstrated strong bipartisan support for locally-led conservation efforts. 

“We fully recognize the need to get our nation’s financial house in order, and we understand that means cuts to Farm Bill programs,” said NACD President Gene Schmidt. “We’re extremely pleased that committee leadership has come up with a strong, balanced plan that fairly recognizes the critical value of locally-led conservation at the landscape scale.”

The proposal calls for a 10-percent cut—approximately $6 billion over 10 years—to Title II Farm Bill Programs.

“Investing in conservation simply makes sense,” Schmidt continued. “Not only do Farm Bill conservation programs play a key role in supporting clean air, clean water and productive soils, they also help producers avoid unnecessary regulation, and support our nation’s long-term economic and food security. As we face increased pressure to produce food, feed, fuel and fiber for a growing population, we simply can’t afford not to invest in natural resource conservation.”

NACD has been working closely with the Senate Agriculture Committee and appreciates the opportunity to provide input throughout the process. Specifically, NACD is pleased to see text that: 1) protects critical conservation program funding, and 2) supports program consolidation for increased efficiency and ease of use for producers.

“NACD has always supported a locally-led, voluntary, incentives-based approach to conservation delivery, and I’m confident that the Committee’s proposal is well-aligned with this philosophy,” said Schmidt. “We urge the full Committee and Senate to support the conservation title recommendations as laid out in the framework.”