The Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board (TSSWCB) was created in 1939, by the Texas Legislature to organize the state into soil conservation districts where there was a need expressed by local landowners. The TSSWCB was also designed to serve as the state-level administrative agency for local Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs) once the districts were organized.
Today, there are 216 SWCDs organized across the state. Each district is an independent political subdivision of state government that is governed by five directors elected by landowners in the district. The TSSWCB provides assistance to the districts through field representatives that meet regularly with districts, through TSSWCB regional offices and through programs administered by the TSSWCB.
Conservation Assistance – Matching Funds
Funding appropriated to the Board for Soil and Water Conservation Districts. Amounts awarded to districts on a dollar for dollar matching basis and requires districts to raise matching funds from sources other than State Funds or earnings from State Funds. Provides funds for annual recurring operating expenses including management, clerical, technical support; educational programs; conservation equipment; and daily operations.
Conservation Implementation Assistance – Technical Assistance
Funding appropriated to the Board for Soil and Water Conservation Districts. Grant distributions are made contingent upon districts filing performance and expenditure reports to the Board. Provides salary and wage assistance to districts helping with their efforts to provide technical assistance to agricultural producers.
Conservation Activity Program
Funding appropriated to the Board for Soil and Water Conservation Districts. The Conservation Activity Program provides districts an opportunity for offset of operating expenses after completing ten core conservation activities. Each activity has a value of $150.00. The Outstanding Conservation District in each of the five areas will receive an additional $500.00 offset. Provides assistance in maintaining a strong educational program to inform landowners on local conservation concerns and encourage the voluntary implementation of conservation practices.
Director Mileage & Per Diem
Funding appropriated to the Board for Soil and Water Conservation Districts. Reimbursements are made for eligible director travel expenses on a quarterly basis. A director may receive a compensation of per diem each day the director attends meetings of the Board of Directors, plus the current state rate per mile for travel each way between the residence of the director and designated meeting place within the boundaries of the conservation district. Two directors of each board may claim per diem for not more than two days while attending the Annual Meeting of SWCD Directors. One director from each district may receive the current state rate per mile to and from his/her place of residence and the site of the Annual Meeting of SWCD Directors.
For more information on these programs, please contact your TSSWCB Field Representative or refer to the Soil and Water Conservation District Manual of Fiscal Operations.