WASHINGTON, Spokane CD – After several months of public education and outreach, the Spokane Conservation District (SCD) was given the green light on replacing its historical Local Special Assessment with a Rates and Charges System and increasing the rate from $5 to $10 per parcel per year. SCD Director Vicki Carter provided a Rates and Charges presentation and public testimony at the Spokane County Board of Commissioners public hearing held on July 23, 2019. She informed the County Commissioners that SCD has operated at the same rate of $5 per parcel since 1998. “The increase is minimal compared to the significance of the impact the new rate will make over the next 10 years,” said Carter.
Over 30 private citizens and public partners showed up to provide support and testimony regarding the services of SCD. Several small acreage landowners, large scale ag operators, contractors, teachers, HOA representatives, and many other community members all shared stories of projects and programs they benefited from through SCD.
Since 1941, SCD has served local residents and landowners as a non-regulatory partner in natural resource conservation. Renewal and the move to a Rates and Charges System will allow SCD to continue vital programs and services which help sustain working lands and wildlife habitat, improve soil health and water quality, and increase education and outreach efforts.
Carter stated, “SCD looks forward to working for the sustainable use and conservation of our natural resources in Spokane County.” The increase in funding will add approximately $950,000 annually to the SCD budget. The increased funding will support existing programs such as Firewise, Vets on the Farm, Fish Barrier Removal, and Commodity Buffers. It will also aid in the development and implementation of new programs such as Home Ignition Zone, South Spokane Farm Corridor, Ditch Management, etc.
All SCD programs and projects are offered without discrimination. The SCD holds a public meeting the 2nd Tuesday of each month. Call the SCD office for actual date and time information at 509-535-7274.
Source: The above article was submitted by the Spokane Conservation District.