In April 1935, the U.S. Congress passed Public Law 74-46, in which it recognized that “the wastage of soil and moisture resources on farm, grazing, and forest lands . . . is a menace to the national welfare,” and it directed the Secretary of Agriculture to establish the Soil Conservation Service (SCS) as a permanent agency in the USDA. In 1994, Congress changed SCS’s name to the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to better reflect the broadened scope of the agency’s concerns. The NRCS has been a pioneer in conservation, working with landowners, local and state governments, and other federal agencies to maintain healthy and productive working landscapes.1
In May 1937, the Colorado State legislature passed an act that established Conservation Districts in Colorado to represent private and public landowners’ interests in conservation planning and practices. Conservation Districts are considered “local governments” which operate under statutory guidance of the State through the Colorado State Conservation Board and in concert with the Colorado Association of Conservation Districts.2,3
El Paso County
In July 1980, the Black Squirrel Conservation District (Established August 4, 1945 | Dissolved July 14, 1980) and the Fountain Valley Conservation District (Established June 7, 1943 | Dissolved June 14, 1980) merged to become the El Paso County Conservation District. We have developed as a not-for-profit organization serving much of the Pikes Peak Region to provide leadership and guidance to farmers and ranchers, both rural and urban, as well as other land users, and our partners, to achieve sustainable conservation and management of natural resources through educational, financial, and on-the-ground technical assistance. The Central Colorado Conservation District (yellow on the following map), Double El Conservation District (pink on the following map), and Kiowa Conservation District (purple on the following map) also operate partially within El Paso County boundaries.
1. “A Brief History of NRCS.” Natural Resources Conservation Service. Accessed December 8, 2022. https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/about/history/brief-history-nrcs.
2. “Colorado State Conservation Board.” Department of Agriculture. Accessed December 8, 2022. https://ag.colorado.gov/conservation/cscb.
3. “Colorado State Conservation Board.” Department of Agriculture. Accessed December 8, 2022. https://ag.colorado.gov/conservation/cscb.