ROGERS COUNTY CONSERVATION DISTRICT
STRIVING TO CONSERVE NATURAL RESOURCES THROUGH EDUCATION AND PRACTICES
The Rogers County Conservation District is local subdivision of state government. The district was formed in 1941 to ensure local people are involved in conservation decisions.
The goal of the district is to provide services to land users in protecting and conserving natural resources, promote conservation education and provide a link to state and federal conservation agencies and programs.
A board of five conservation district directors (three elected and two appointed) governs the conservation district.
The board of directors submits this annual report to inform the public of last year’s conservation accomplishments.
We invite all citizens to become familiar with the activities of the Rogers County Conservation District and to visit us, in hopes that we might better serve you. We also invite people to attend our monthly board meeting held on the first Thursday of each month at 4:00 p.m.
Mission Statement: The mission of the Rogers County Conservation District is to offer technical, informational, and educational assets to our clients and partners in order to ensure sound management of our natural resources and to pass on a tradition of responsible land stewardship. (Adopted June 2009)
Vision Statement: Good stewardship of Rogers County’s natural resources. (Adopted June 2009)
Rogers County Conservation District Board of Directors: George Fraley (chairman), Trent Boyd, Ken Froese, Paulette Hood and Joe Parker.
The Conservation District shares office space with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), a federal agency in the U. S. Department of Agriculture. The NRCS provides technical assistance to the conservation district and district cooperators, and administers USDA programs.
Our office is open Monday- Thursday from 7:00 a.m. -4: 30 p.m. and Friday 8:00a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Conservation Cost-Share Program
The conservation district administers the Oklahoma Conservation Cost Share Program for Rogers County. This past year we administered program year 11B funds in which we received $23,863. From this amount we were able to fund twelve agreements which included; three obstruction removals and nine ponds. To date there have been five cooperators complete their practices. The local cooperators have received payments for program year 11B for the total amount of $7,662.08. The cooperators’ share was $7,959.83. This past year we also administered program year 12 funds in which we received $12,300. From this amount we were able to fund six agreements which included; five ponds and one brush management. To date there has been one cooperator complete their practice. The local cooperator has received payment for program year 12 for the total amount of $2,000. The cooperators’ share was $11,750.
We plan to participate in the program again this year if it becomes available. There is still a lot of interest in the program amongst our cooperators. Many need ponds (some of which need tanks and fencing) and there is still a need for pasture planting and nutrient management along with other practices.
The Oklahoma Legislature established the program in 1998 requiring annual funding from the legislature. Since the beginning of the program, contracts have been developed in Rogers County providing $115,685.98 in cost share funds for conservation practices, such as, grass planting, nutrient management, ponds, freeze-proof tanks and fencing, and grade stabilization structures. Landowners have provided $132,606.27 for their share of the cost of the conservation practices that totaled $238,630.17.
The conservation district board obtains input from citizens and other local agencies to determine which conservation practices will be included in the program each year.
A portion of northeast Rogers County lies within the Pryor Creek Watershed. The Rogers County Conservation District is the sponsor for the project which has six flood control structures.
The conservation district works with NRCS in making annual inspections of these flood control dams and providing maintenance work on the dams including, clearing trees from the dam and earthen spillway, beaver control, repairing erosion problems, mowing and maintaining good stands of grass on the dams and earthen spillways, and keeping the inlet tower of the principal spillway cleared of debris. The structures operated properly during the heavy rains this year.
The primary goal of the district’s watershed program is making sure the dams function as they were designed and remain safe.
Abandoned Mine Land Program
Rogers County has approximately one-half of all abandoned mine land in Oklahoma. We have worked closely, for many years, with the Oklahoma Conservation Commission and the Natural Resources Conservation Service to eliminate many hazards left from abandoned coal mines. To date 55 projects have been reclaimed for a total of 1,596 acres. Reclamation is funded through a federal tax of $0.35 per ton which is collected on currently mined coal.
Information and Education
The Rogers County Conservation District participates in Conservation Education activities across the state and partners with other districts, other state and federal agencies and private partners to convey the message of conservation and the importance of Oklahoma’s natural resources. This year the District sponsored our annual Earth Day concert with a conservation theme which had approximately 1,146 of mostly fourth graders in attendance. Following the concert the students rotated through conservation activity stations.
In addition to special events, the Rogers County Conservation District manages the Rogers State University Conservation Education Reserve, a 120 acre outdoor classroom located adjacent to the Claremore, OK campus. District staff handles daily field trips from school groups, scheduled activities and year round use by the public. The curriculum is conservation centered and cross subject oriented, and geared for any age or grade. Our staff travels across Oklahoma, helping other Districts with their environmental and conservation programs.
Teacher training is also an important resource provided by the staff from the Rogers County Conservation District. This fiscal year recorded many opportunities across the state for teachers including workshops dealing with Project WET, Project WILD and Project Learning Tree, as well as specially designed and formulated workshops for educators and the public.
STUDENT/TEACHER NUMBERS AT RESERVE
Other Events 2009 Wildlife Expo 48,940
2009 Rogers County Fair 2,500
Earth Day program 1,140
TOTAL FY2010 Website hits 106,149
Our Conservation District is a sponsor of the Tallgrass RC&D, along with Tulsa, Osage, Washington, Payne, and Pawnee Counties.
The Tallgrass RC&D assists the District and NRCS with outreach, tourism, dry hydrants, and we are involved in ways to increase the economy and jobs by providing low interest loans through grants.
USDA Conservation Programs
The conservation district works closely with the NRCS in carrying out conservation work in the county. Their staff provides technical assistance to the conservation district and to county land users. The NRCS also administers several federal cost share programs.
Listed below are accomplishments through NRCS federal conservation programs over the past year.
4 Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) contracts were developed comprising 3,500 acres, making up approx. $80,000 in conservation assistance. This gives them a total of 79 EQIP contracts with 50,061 acres, for a total of approx. $631,769 in conservation assistance.
Restoration was done on 2 Wetland Reserve Program (WRP) sites. To date there has been a total of 13 WRP contracts on over 14,301 acres.
2 Conservation Security Program (CSP) contracts are administered on 1,364 acres.
1 Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) contract is administered on 30 acres.
Services and programs provided by the conservation district and NRCS are offered on a nondiscriminatory basis without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, gender, martial status or physical disability.