Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the USDA will be investing $3 million in Iowa’s wetlands. The funds will be used to purchase and restore wetlands and associated tall grass prairie uplands, nearly doubling the protected wetlands in the state.
Secretary Vilsack made the announcement at the Des Moines Botanical Garden as part of an event focusing on USDA conservation work in Iowa that included the appointment of Kurt Simon as the new Iowa State Conservationist for USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey issued the following statement on the announcement of Kurt Simon as the new State Conservationist for Iowa.
“The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship works hand-in-hand with USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service and I’m excited to welcome Kurt to Iowa. NRCS and the 100 Soil and Water Conservation Districts across the state continue to work together collaboratively to implement the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy. During the last fiscal year the Iowa Department of Agriculture and NRCS invested more than $51 million in conservation and water quality efforts in the state. We all recognize we have more work to do on conservation and water quality and I’m excited for Kurt to come onboard and continue to strengthen the relationship between our two agencies.”