The Soil & Water Conservation program traces its roots to the great dust bowl era of the 1930s. In 1937, President Roosevelt wrote each state recommending the legislation that led to the State Soil & Water conservation programs. The Alaska Soil Conservation District Law was passed in 1947 during our territorial days. Districts are legal subdivisions of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources and are authorized under Alaska State Statute 41.10. . As provided by AS 41.10.130 the Commissioner of Natural Resources is authorized to "Create Soil and Water Conservation Districts in the state. . . ." and " . . . delegate to the district supervisors powers as the commissioner considers necessary to accomplish the purposes of this chapter within district boundaries.”
SWCDs are local units of government that develop, manage, and direct natural resource programs at the local level. They work in both urban and rural settings, with landowners and other land managers, to carry out a program for the conservation, wise use, and sustainable development of soil, water, and related resources. The Homer District is one of 13 soil and water conservation districts in Alaska.
Districts are run by a volunteer board of local “District Supervisors.” SWCD are in essence the lowest order or State Government. In Alaska, Supervisors serve 3-year staggered terms; generally, two or three of the five supervisors are up for election each fall. To be eligible to serve as a Supervisor you must first be district cooperator.
Working as a grassroots organization of local landowners, in partnership with state and federal agencies, we promote the conservation and productive and sustainable use of natural resources. The Homer District is a non-regulatory organization of approximately 200 private landowners from 12 communities. As an organization that actively involves diverse stakeholders including state and federal agencies, community groups, farmers and ranchers, the Homer District is well-suited to provide local leadership for natural resource related activities and education.
We invite local landowners and land managers to become Homer SWCD Cooperators. Our Cooperators make the base of our organization and are the drivers of the programming we offer. See the "Cooperators" section for more information.
Soil and water conservation programs provide an effective and results-oriented way to promote local conservation and wise development of our renewable natural resources.