About LCPD

What the Land Conservation Department is All About

The Land Conservation Department is directly guided by the Land Conservation Committee (LCC) and LCC was created through state law. Chapter 92 of the Wisconsin State Statues required all counties to create a Land Conservation Committee to carry out their responsibilities for conserving soil, water and related material resources.

The LCC oversees the administration and implementation of conservation programs to meet local priorities and the needs of land users. These programs might be local programs or state programs that are implemented at the local level.

The Land Conservation Department (LCD) is made up of employees of the county. According to Chapter 92, LCD staff exercise the powers granted to the LCC and carry out LCC powers and directives. In short terms, the LCD is the LCC’s right arm.

The Pepin County Land Conservation Committee and Land Conservation Department strive to target four major goals:

1. To protect and enhance the quality and quantity of water resources.

2. To preserve and maintain our valuable soil resources.

3. To promote a positive conservation ethic.

4. To protect and enhance diverse wildlife habitat.

To achieve these goals, the LCD offers conservation funding programs that provide a major role in assistance to landowners in protecting our valuable farmland, soil and water resources. Programs include: (1) Land and Water Resource Management (LWRM) (2) County Cost-share which also includes a Buffer Incentive Program, Cold water Stream Program and Invasive Species Program. (3) Segregated (SEG) program offering cost-share for nutrient management planning.

The LCD provides free technical services to landowners in assisting them in installation of best management practices. Common conservation practices approved for funding include grade stabilization structures (dams), grassed waterways, stream bank protection, access roads, diversions, well abandonment, and nutrient management planning and manure storage facilities. Locally implemented conservation programs across the state address a variety of resource issues, including but not limited to: controlling soil erosion, managing manure and nutrient applications, planning for future land use, protecting important land area, managing groundwater, managing lakes, rivers and shoreline area, protecting and restoring wetlands, managing forest resources and controlling invasive species. Additional practices are available and can be discussed by staff members.

The LCD offers educational opportunities such as Smokey Bear for 2nd Graders, Arbor Day Free Trees for 4th Graders, Earth Day Conservation Grocery Bag project, Conservation Poster and Speaking Contest, Land Judging, Stream monitoring, Conservation Field Days for 5th & 6th graders , offered spring and fall. Numerous news releases are submitted to the local newspapers in regards to conservation. The department offers a colorful website with much information on conservation updates, happenings and various conservation programs, application forms and links to various websites that may help answer any questions or concerns they may have.

The LCD administers the Wildlife Damage Program and Snowmobile Program, NR 135 nonmetallic mining reclamation, provides a tree sales program, takes care of the County parks and shooting range maintenance along with camping fees, maintains PL566 Watershed structures, issues manure storage permits, administers the Farmland Preservation and Conservation Reserve Enhancement programs.

The LCD has a welcoming partnership with Natural Resource Conservation Services (NRCS), Farm Service Agency (FSA), UW-Extension, Zoning and Land Management, DNR and Recycling and Solid Waste Departments.

The LCC and LCD strive to get the message out to the community on conservation ethics and what can be done to be good stewards of the land. The LCC and LCD are passionate on continuing to spread the conservation messages in any way possible and look forward to continuing their goals to accomplish this.