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What is a Conservation District?


Soil and Water Conservation Districts are local subdivisions established under state law to conserve soil and water resources.  

In 1937, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Soil Conservation Act, creating the Soil Conservation Service in response to the agricultural and ecological disaster known as the Dust Bowl.  The Soil and Water Conservation District Law was adopted by New York State in 1940.   There are currently 58 Conservation Districts in NYS, and nearly 3,000 Districts nationwide - one in almost every county. Fulton County Soil & Water Conservation District was established on June 22, 1947.  Districts are located in each county or borough in NYS.

What Do Districts Do?

The purpose of conservation districts is to work with landowners, organizations, and governmental agencies to protect soil, water quality, and other natural resources. New York's Conservation Districts are the "gateways" to natural resource, providing a link between land owners and conservation service providers. The Districts help educate the public on the benefits of conservation practices by encouraging them to become stewards of our natural resources and how to protect these resources.

Each District is governed locally by a Board of Directors. Directors are representatives of local groups. Fulton County SWCD Board of Directors is made up of two Supervisors appointed by the County Board of Supervisors, one Farm Bureau representative, on representative from The Grange, and one member at large.

The Fulton County SWCD Board of Directors meets every third Tuesday of the month at 10:00 a.m. at the District office located at 113 Hales Mills Road Ext., Johnstown, NY.  The meetings are open to the public.

District Employees:

John Persch, District Manager -

Jacob Hart, Resource Conservationist - 


Mikaela Perham - District Secretary 


NRCS Staff:

Thomas Bielli, District Conservationist  -

2021 Annual Newsletter

Board of Directors:

Mathew Brower, Chairman

Mitch Rogers, Vice Chairman

Robert Perry, Farm Bureau

Frank Lauria, County Legislator

John Praught, County Legislator

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