Agriculture

James River SWCD is responsible for providing sound conservation and agronomic technical assistance to producers in Chesterfield and Prince George counties.  The goal of the agriculture program is to conserve natural resources in a manner that increases production.  The JRSWCD staff are trained to advise producers and work with partner organizations to provide the best possible service to Chesterfield and Prince George producers.

Cost-Share

James River SWCD manages the Virginia Ag-BMP Cost-Share Program for Chesterfield and Prince George counties.  The program is administered by the Virginia Department of Conservation & Recreation who secure and distribute funding to conservation districts across the state.  This program is designed to assist agricultural producers with implementing conservation practices on their farmland by sharing the financial costs ("cost-share") associated with installing or performing the practice. Our cost-share program is vital in allowing producers to help conserve our natural resources, because otherwise many practices would be too expensive for them to do on their own.

The impact of these practices is two-fold.  They provide an agronomic benefit to the farmer by increasing production on the farm through sustainable growth and better farm infrastructure.  Concurrently, the water quality impact is significant through reducing soil and streambank erosion, bacterial contamination of surface water, and nutrient loss.

Cost-Share Brochure

How Cost-Share Works

First, a producer needs to get in touch with a representative from James River SWCD to schedule a farm visit, where staff will determine what practices would be best suited for the issue the producer is having.  Then, once the producer and our staff agree on the best way to move forward, the producer will sign a Contract Part I indicating that they are eligible for cost-share and wish to receive funding.  Once, the staff has generated a cost-estimate and/or calculated the cost-share payment it will be taken to the Board of Directors who meet once a month.  Here the application will either get approved or dismissed.  If the contract gets approved the participant will receive a letter stating such and this means they are approved for funding contingent upon availability.  After approval, much consultation will be done between the participant and JRSWCD staff to determine what will be needed to complete the project.  Payment for the practice will be issued once it is completed and the staff determines that it meets District standards and specifications.

For those already working on a cost-share project, JRSWCD has guidance documents available for implementing some practices.

Practices and Cost-Share Incentives

Here are two documents with information on common practices used by JRSWCD and the incentives for cost-share.  A complete list of practices can be found in the Virginia Ag-BMP Cost-share Manual or contact James River SWCD for more information.

Cropland Best Management Practices

Livestock Best Management Practices

Tax Credit

The Virginia Agricultural BMP Tax Credit Program is very similar to the cost-share program except in this program producers get their tax burden credited by implementing conservation practices.  Sometimes this is also available as a part of a cost-share practice.  Sign-up and approval is the same as the cost-share program.  Instead of receiving a check for implementing the practice James River SWCD will issue a tax credit certificate that the participant will take to their tax accountant.

Along with agriculture BMPs, Virginia offers tax credits for conservation tillage and precision agriculture equipment.  All producers are eligible for a tax credit on conservation tillage equipment and producers who have a nutrient management plan approved by James River SWCD are eligible for tax credit on precision agriculture equipment.  For specifics on what equipment qualify please contact James River SWCD.

Equipment Tax Credit

 No-till Drill

James River SWCD rents a 7’ Great Plains no-till drill to residents of Chesterfield and Prince George counties.  The rental fee for the drill is $10/acre for less than 40 acres and $7/acre for 40 acres or more.  The drill is located at the JRSWCD office in Prince George.  To sign up to use the drill or for more information contact the JRSWCD office.