Skip to Content

Press Releases

Subcommittee Reviews Technical Assistance Capacity of USDA Conservation Programs

Washington, DC, July 1, 2010

WASHINGTON - On July 1, 2010, Congressman Tim Holden, D-Pa., Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee’s Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy, and Research, held a hearing to review the administration and delivery of conservation programs.

Liz Friedlander (202) 225-1564
Liz.Friedlander@mail.house.gov

James Ryder (202) 225-0020
James.Ryder@mail.house.gov  

Today, Congressman Tim Holden, D-Pa., Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee’s Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy, and Research, held a hearing to review the administration and delivery of conservation programs.

"Technical assistance is a crucial component of conservation. Today's hearing provided an opportunity to hear from those on the front lines of this effort to make certain that the delivery mechanisms are in place to give land owners access to the expertise they need to make proper land management decisions and implement conservation practices,” Chairman Holden said. “It is critical for the future of viable farms and forests that USDA implement the most efficient and effective policies available."

"The delivery system is the life-line to ensuring the success of conservation programs. If programs are not being administered effectively and our producers are not receiving the technical guidance they need then an increase in the number of programs and in the level of funding will not achieve improved conservation benefits,” Subcommittee Ranking Member Bob Goodlatte, R-VA said. “Today's hearing helped us to understand where the deficiencies are in USDA administering these programs and systems, and what needs to be done so that farmers, ranchers, and foresters receive cost-efficient conservation on the ground."

The Subcommittee heard testimony from Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Chief Dave White and Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Jonathan Coppess.

Producers participating in USDA conservation programs use technical assistance and Technical Service Providers (TSPs) to help plan and implement their conservation goals.

Written testimony provided by the witnesses is available on the Committee website: http://democrats-agriculture.house.gov/hearings/index.html. A full transcript of the hearing will be posted on the Committee website at a later date.

Witness List:

Panel I

Mr. Dave White, Chief, Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, D.C.

Mr. Jonathan W. Coppess, Administrator, Farm Service Agency, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, D.C.

Panel II

Mr. Steve Robinson, President, National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD), Washington, D.C.

Mr. John Lohr, Vice President, National Association of FSA County Office Employees (NASCOE), Norvelt, Pennsylvania

Mr. Ron Leathers, Public Finance Director, Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever, St. Paul, Minnesota

Dr. Scott Manley, Director of Conservation Programs, Ducks Unlimited, Ridgeland, Mississippi

Dr. Robert T. Burns, Assistant Dean for Agriculture, Natural Resources and Rural Development, The University of Tennessee Extension, Knoxville, Tennessee

Mr. Steve Dlugosz, Certified Crop Adviser (CCA), Lead Agronomist, Harvestland Cooperative, on behalf of the International Certified Crop Adviser (ICCA) Program and the American Society of Agronomy, Indianapolis, Indiana

Mr. William L. Braford, Consulting Forester, Bluechip Forestry, Natural Bridge Station, Virginia
 

###
 

Back to top