Issue Papers

The issue papers below reflect NACD’s board-adopted positions on key conservation policy priorities for this and previous fiscal years.

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Government Affairs and Policy


Fiscal Year 2019 Appropriations Issue Paper |PDF|

Natural Resource Health and Management Issue Paper |PDF|

Farm Bill Issue Paper |PDF|

Watershed Programs Issue Paper – from National Watershed Coalition|PDF|

Programs and Topics of Interest


Basics of Technical Assistance
Technical assistance – such as services like conservation planning, soil testing, and training programs – supports and enables voluntary and locally-led conservation on all landscapes nationwide, from rural farms to suburban backyards. The delivery of technical assistance requires adequate funding, both through annual appropriations bills and through the farm bill.

CTA Educational Two-Pager
The USDA Conservation Technical Assistance (CTA) program is the lifeblood of conservation in the United States. Through NRCS and its local, state, and national partners, CTA helps landowners become better stewards of their natural resources by assisting them with resource assessment, practical design, planning, and monitoring of conservation practices.

Natural Resource Management One-pager
NACD believes proper natural resource management is critical to the overall health of both private and public lands. This document provides an overview of NACD’s positions on the Endangered Species Act modernization, invasive species management, wildfire management, and wild horse and burro management.

Urban Conservation One-pager
Like other types of landscapes, urban and suburban communities face natural resource challenges. Water quality and quantity, air quality, invasive species, habitat degradation, and limited open space all affect land use management in developed and developing areas. Districts are helping to address these natural resource issues across the nation. Past research has shown that close to 70 percent of the nation’s conservation districts are involved in some form of urban and community conservation. Districts provide landowners with soil testing, training in urban erosion and sediment control measures, assistance in tree-planting and management, and resources on stormwater management.

Soil Health Champions One-pager
The NACD Soil Health Champions Network is made up of farmers, ranchers, and woodland owners from across the nation who practice good soil health management on their operations and promote the use of soil health management systems in their communities. This document includes an overview of the network, including member responsibilities and benefits.

Soil Health Research One-pager
New research conducted by NACD finds that corn and soybean farmers who use cover crops and/or no-till can improve their bottom lines by over $100 per acre.

Resource Stewardship Evaluation Tool Two-pager
NACD and NRCS are working together to expand the use of RSET – short for Resource Stewardship Evaluation Tool – among agricultural producers nationwide. RSET is the future of conservation planning. In the development of the tool, NRCS has integrated the best attributes of all its existing and past science-based, resource evaluation tools to give producers one holistic look at their agricultural operation’s current management and conservation activities.

Archived Issue Papers


Farm Bill Principles |PDF|

Fiscal Year 2018 Appropriations Issue Paper |PDF|

Natural Resource Management Issue Paper |PDF|

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