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West Virginia group meets with congressional delegation about conservation priorities - 3/25/24
posted by: Davin White

Passage of a new Farm Bill in Congress and increased funding for major small watershed dam rehabilitations and repairs were some of the top priorities a contingent from West Virginia shared with members of Congress and their staffers during a visit to Washington, D.C. on March 20.

Representatives of the West Virginia Conservation Agency (Davin White and Devon Kokoska) joined with Northern Panhandle Conservation District supervisor Amy Wade,  Heather Duncan of the West Virginia Association of Conservation Districts and Jon Bourdon of the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service during the visit to Washington.

We met with representatives of all four members of the West Virginia congressional delegation, including staffers with Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito's offices and Reps. Alex Mooney and Carol Miller's offices. (We also met in person with Sen. Manchin for about 10 minutes.)

A top priority discussed was increasing the federal-to-state ratio of spending on major dam rehabilitation projects to 90-10. The current ratio is 65-35. An increase in federal spending on major rehabilitation projects would benefit conservation projects statewide and extend state dollars even further.

We also encouraged the congressional delegation to make language changes that would allow USDA-NRCS to help fund smaller dam repairs and provide technical expertise on such projects. Further, we simply advocated for passage of a new Farm Bill in Congress.    

Some photos from our visit are below, including a quick stop to the United States Botanic Garden.










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