Saturday, January 16, 2021

Bedford County Invites Landowners, Public, Stakeholders To Be Part Of Next Steps In Implementing Countywide Clean Water Action Plan

Bedford County is inviting landowners, the public and other local stakeholders to be part of the next steps in implementing the county’s Clean Water Action Plan.

Last year, a group of local leaders and residents from various backgrounds-- agriculture, business, environmental, engineering, and local government-- came together and formed a committee to develop the Bedford Countywide Clean Water Action Plan.

Most Bedford County residents would agree the Bedford region is an outdoor enthusiast and sportsmans’ paradise. One can find trails, parks, and fishing holes from one end of the county to the other nestled within wide swaths of forests, farms, serene landscapes, and other natural resources. 

The intent of the Plan is to preserve and restore local natural resources, improve local water quality, help meet Chesapeake Bay pollution reduction obligations and reduce flooding without sacrificing other community initiatives tied to infrastructure, local economics, farming, and transportation.

The local committee identified six focus areas in the CAP to implement or help implement improvements and preservation practices, including agriculture, stormwater, preservation of natural areas, point source pollution, riparian buffers, and education. 

Action Teams are now forming around each focus area to provide guidance and direction for future activities and efforts. 

Local insight and expertise is also being provided by the Bedford County Conservation District and the  Bedford County Planning Commission

"It's a privilege for the conservation district to be part of this collaborative approach, working with our partners and stakeholders to implement the CAP with existing practices and funding sources to put projects on the ground,” said Jennifer Lentz Kovacs, the Bedford County Conservation District Manager.

LandStudies was hired to serve as the local Clean Water Action Plan Coordinator to handle administrative and technical support duties. 

Click Here for a copy of Bedford County’s Clean Water Technical Toolbox.

Funding Awarded

Bedford County was recently awarded a $428,992 grant from DEP to help fund the Coordinator and on-the-ground projects in these priority areas--conservation landscaping, stream restoration, bioretention and rain gardens, wetland creation and restoration, pervious pavement, urban tree canopy, livestock exclusion fencing, and streambank tree plantings.  Read more here.

Bedford County will also benefit from a $675,000 Growing Greener grant awarded to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation to provide forested buffer incentives in Bedford, Centre, Cumberland, Franklin, Lancaster and York counties.  Read more here.

Your Help Needed!

Landowners, the public and local stakeholders are invited to participate in the next steps to help implement the County Clean Water Plan.

Any individual interested in learning more about the Bedford Action Plan or wanting to get involved can contact --

-- Jennifer Lentz Kovacs, District Manager, Bedford County Conservation District, by sending an email to: or call 814-623-7900 ext 4;

-- Don Schwartz, Director, Bedford County Planning Commission, by sending an email to or call 814-623-4827; or

-- Mike LaSala, Water Action Plan Coordinator, by sending an email to: or call 717-371-2175. 

[PA Chesapeake Bay Plan

[For more information on how Pennsylvania plans to meet its Chesapeake Bay cleanup obligations, visit DEP’s PA’s Phase 3 Watershed Implementation Plan webpage.

[Click Here for a summary of the steps the Plan recommends.

[How Clean Is Your Stream?

[DEP’s Interactive Report Viewer allows you to zoom in on your own stream or watershed to find out how clean your stream is or if it has impaired water quality using the latest information in the draft 2020 Water Quality Report.].

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[Posted: January 16, 2021] 
PA Environment Digest

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