FAQs for the Lower Susquehanna Regional Partnership

What organizations do you represent?

Penn State is one of many organizations working to collaborate with landowners to improve conservation practices on their land. We collectively work with public and private sector partners with the shared goal of providing resources for successful solutions to landowners though installing best management practices (BMPs). These partners include Conservation Districts, NRCS, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, Stroud Water Research Center, Lancaster Farmland Trust, private ag consulting companies, and many others. Penn State provides a coordination role in our priority watersheds so that all these partners can work together on these solutions.

What is my obligation if I choose to participate?

It depends on the path forward you choose with what resources you would like to access. Our program is purely voluntary, andwewantyoutobecomfortablewiththepathforwardthatmakesthemostsensetoyou. Whetheryouchoosetowork with federal, state, local or private partners, the commitment is variable. Penn State can help you to understand what your commitment may look like based on what your needs or interests are. If you agree to work with us, you may pause the partnership if your circumstances change or you change your mind.

What if I do not want to accept government funding?

Penn State works with private partners as an alternative to what you may be more familiar with. This may include a difference in how you apply, what information you share and other commitments you may or may not have to make.

How does this work?

Penn State can work with you to consider what your conservation needs and goals may be and can potentially identify other opportunities you may not have considered. We can connect you with a technical resource or work with your existing technical service provider. Depending upon your interests, we can develop a plan on how to support the planning, designing, permitting, and installation of practices, including options for funding.

What kind of funding is available from your program?

Funds are earned based on the acres of forest riparian buffers implemented on your farm, at $4,000/acre, capped at $20,000. New and existing buffers are counted toward your acreage totals. If your farm does not have a stream, we will provide $10,000. We may allocate funds above these caps for high impact projects. These funds are then used to fund other conservation practices on your farm. Our funds are flexible and can be used for all aspects of a conservation project, including planning, design, or construction. We will work with you and our partners to find other funding sources to make whole farm projects happen. With our extensive partnership, we are often able to get projects fully implemented without any out-of-pocket costs to the farmer.

What about maintenance related to riparian buffer plantings?

We recognize concerns about required maintenance and there are a variety of programs that support establishment of plantings, including post-planting maintenance. We will work with you with you to select a program, outline maintenance needs, and identify partners cand programs can support you financially and/or related to labor or equipment.

What if I am already working with an organization, like the Conservation District or NRCS?

We are actively working with many partners, including the Conservation District and NRCS, to support landowners with planning, designing, permitting, and installing BMPs. We’ve done many projects with NRCS and other partners where we’ve partnered with existing programs to provide additional resources that can help cover out-of-pocket costs you may have. We can help facilitate any ongoing efforts and identify funding and technical resources if needed, including being available to answer your questions. We’ll work directly with your preferred technical assistance provider to make a project happen.