JDSWCD Programs

Natural Resource Inventory
The purpose of a Natural Resource Inventory Report (NRI) is to provide Information on the natural resources of a parcel. This information is helpful when land use decisions such as changes in zoning or new development are proposed. The NRI is designed to provide the basis for proper decisions regarding land use changes and development while protecting the natural resource base of the county. The conclusions of a NRI do not indicate that a particular land use isn't possible but rather should be used as an alert of possible issues that might occur if the capabilities of the land are ignored. For more information click
here or contact the JDSWCD at (815) 858-3418 ext. 3.
Cover Crop Program
The JDSWCD is participating in the IL Department of Agriculture's Partners for Conservation Program which is promoting the use of cover crops through a cost share program. The cost share rate is $40/acre with a maximum of $1600/yr for up to three years. There is limited funding available on a first come first served basis.  For more information on this program please contact the JDSWCD at (815) 858-3418 ext. 3
. For more information on crops used as cover crops click here. For a cover crop decision tool click here


NRCS Programs

Well Sealing Program
The District offers grant money to assist with the sealing of abandoned wells through an Illinois Department of Agriculture program with matching funds provided by the League of Women Voters. The District is authorized to pay 80% of the cost of the well sealing with a maximum reimbursement of $600. The landowner must contact the District prior to sealing the well to be eligible for the program but the District is limited in the number of wells it can seal. The District is working in cooperation with the Jo Daviess County Health Department in this program and the Health Department may be able to reduce expenses by providing materials at a very low cost to the landowner. For more program information click
here. If you are interested in applying for this program, please contact the JDSWCD at (815) 858-3418 ext. 3.

Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)
The EQIP is a voluntary conservation program for persons who are engaged in livestock,forestry or agricultural production, including organic production. EQIP offers financial and technical assistance to implement conservation practices on eligible agricultural land. For more information please visit the EQIP website by clicking
here or call the NRCS District Conservationist at (815) 858-3418 ext 3.

Conservation Reserve Program (CRP)
The CRP is a FSA program for which the NRCS provides technical support. The goal of this program is to establish land cover that helps improve water quality, reduces soil erosion, and provides wildlife habitat. Environmentally sensitive land is removed from agricultural production for a yearly rental fee and species that will improve environmental health are planted. Contracts for CRP are 10-15 years in length. For more information, visit the CRP webpage by clicking
here or call FSA at (815) 858-3418 ext 105.

Conservation Stewardship program (CSP)
The CSP helps producers maintain and improve upon existing conservation practices. This program also allows the addition of conservation practices that address priority resource concerns. For more information, visit the CSP website by clicking
here or call the NRCS District Conservationist at (815) 858-3418 ext 3.



Streambank Stabilization and Restoration Program (SSRP)

Streambank erosion is a natural process that occurs in all streams as water wears away the soil and rock that form their banks. As the banks are worn away, streams naturally and slowly establish a meandering course. Streambank erosion in Illinois has, however, been accelerated by land altering activities such as: stream channelization and straightening, removal of streamside vegetation, construction of impervious surfaces and other activities which increase drainage water flow and water velocity.

Streambank erosion has become a serious threat to the land, water, plant and animal resources along many streams in Illinois. Streambank erosion, when left unchecked, can be responsible for the loss or damage to valuable farmland, wildlife habitat, buildings, roads, bridges and other public and private structures and property. Streambank erosion is also a major source of sediments deposited in Illinois lakes, streams and backwater areas and may contribute to as much as 30-50% of the downstream sediment load. Sediment reduces stream channel capacity, which may increase flooding and streambank erosion, or reduce depth and holding capacity of lakes and reservoirs. Excessive sedimentation also degrades water quality and destroys fish and wildlife habitat.

The primary goals of the SSRP are to develop and demonstrate vegetative, stone structure and other low-cost bio-engineering techniques for stabilizing streambanks and to encourage the adoption of low-cost streambank stabilization practices by making available financial incentives, technical assistance and educational information to landowners with critically eroding streambanks.

There are 10 objectives associated with the goals.
1. To stabilize and restore high priority streambanks that are eroding severely using dormant plantings, vegetative materials, stone structures and other low-cost techniques.
2. Reduce the loss of streambanks and reduce loss and use limitations on adjacent land areas, including agricultural land, urban land, wildlife habitat and other properties and land uses.
3. Reduce soil loss and the resulting sedimentation that can fill stream channels and deplete the holding capacity of lakes and reservoirs.
4. Protect water quality by reducing nutrients and chemicals contained in soil material or runoff waters from entering a stream or water body.
5. Protect aquatic life and habitat, and fisheries, by reducing erosion and sedimentation and restoring beneficial vegetation.
6. Protect real estate, public and private property, infrastructure, public works, buildings and structures, and other investments or improvements.
7. Protect, create or restore wildlife habitat.
8. Improve land and water aesthetics by stabilizing streambanks with natural vegetation.
9. Slow stream velocity during high water or flooding conditions and reduce flood damage.
10. Demonstrate the effectiveness of low-cost streambank stabilization techniques to the public.


All landowners and project sites (rural and urban) in each Illinois county are eligible for a SSRP demonstration, watershed project and/or cost share assistance, provided that the project site meets the assessment and selection criteria established for successful streambank stabilization using approved low-cost, vegetative, stone structure and/or other bio-engineering techniques.

All project proposals in Jo Daviess County must be sponsored and prepared with the approval of the Jo Daviess Soil and Water Conservation District Board and with the technical assistance of qualified SWCD or USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service employees. For more information, contact the District office at 815-858-3418, ext. 3