Benzie Conservation District
Preserving and Enhancing the Natural Resources of Benzie County
The USDA – Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), along with the Benzie Conservation District and the Manistee Conservation District, is hosting a public local work group meeting to discuss the FY2024 Farm Bill Programs. Local work group meetings are formed and held annually to gather input from cooperating federal, state and local agencies, conservation organizations, and the public to determine the priority natural resource concerns in our area. The conservation districts serve a vital role as the link between the private landowner and the USDA-NRCS who administers the farm bill conservation programs. Input provided will be used to help inform NRCS’s strategic response to local natural resource concerns.
The meeting will be held on Wednesday, September 13, 2023 from 1:00 - 3:00pm at the Mills Community House located at 891 Michigan Ave, Benzonia, MI 49616. In addition to the meeting, the NRCS is seeking input via a public survey which can be completed through September 15th, 2023. The survey consists of 16 natural resource concerns that are common to our part of Michigan, such as air quality, terrestrial habitat, surface water and groundwater pollution, and soil health, and asks participants to rank these concerns between low priority, medium priority, and high priority. The concerns prioritized through the survey will be used to determine NRCS’s FY 2024 Farm Bill conservation programs.
Paper copies of the survey can be found at either the Manistee Conservation District or Benzie Conservation District offices and can be returned by mail, email, or by dropping it off at the Conservation District offices.
For more information on the local work group meeting or the survey, contact your local NRCS office at 231-889-9666 for Manistee County, or 231-882-4391 for Benzie County.
Become a Benzie River Steward at the fifteenth annual Platte River Clean Sweep!
Last month, during the sweep on the Betsie River, 33 volunteers hit the river and collectively paddled from Homestead Dam all the way to Elberta. In thirteen miles, and just a few hours, the crews removed about 100 pounds of trash. Without their stewardship, this litter could have continued to degrade into the water system or remain tangled in precious wildlife habitats.
Want to get involved?
Up next, you’re invited to The Platte River Clean Sweep on July 15th. We're aiming to remove harmful debris from over eight miles of the water. Home to the Platte River State Fish Hatchery and Weir, this habitat supports tens of thousands of salmon, and it is essential to their safety that the river is as free as possible from loose fishing line, hooks, plastic, and other harmful debris. River cleanups are an ongoing effort and you can help make the best possible impact.
Registration is required so that we can prepare enough food for all volunteers.
The Benzie Conservation District will provide cleanup tools (like grabbers and bags). Participants should bring their own boat, life jacket, insect repellent, sunscreen, and water.
Before launching, please remember to practice the key habit of cleaning, draining, and drying your boat and equipment. The Clean, Drain, Dry, Dispose approach stops harmful debris (and invasive species!) from entering the water we're working to keep clean and safe.
To everyone who has helped keep this river healthy in the past, whether by attending the Clean Sweep, spreading the word, or doing your part to dispose of waste properly, thank you! We hope you’ll join us at the Platte River Clean Sweep in July. Please email email@example.com with any questions or to register.