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Survey of USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service District Conservationists

Project Period:

1 year 1994-01-01 - 1995-01-01

Principal Investigator:

J. Dixon Esseks, Northern Illinois University, Steve Kraft, Southern Illinois University and Helen Fach, USDA NRCS

We surveyed 1,200 district conservationists by mail in April 1994 to find out how they have adapted to the regulatory roles imposed by the 1985 and 1990 Farm Bills. Questions were developed using focus group meetings with district conservationists in each of NRCS' four administrative regions. CAE provided technical assistance and policy interpretation.

Internal USDA report and briefing that uncovered concerns by district conservationists about their expanding roles in enforcing conservation compliance. Most district conservationists felt they could not easily take on any additional regulatory responsibilities. District conservationists in the Northeast region appeared to be able to adjust more quickly to changing roles.

American Farmland Trust