Voluntary Farmland Preservation Program

Mission & Vision

  • Promote and Protect Working lands and the general ecological welfare of Moore County
  • Sustain and promote agriculture in Moore County
  • Preserve our rich history of agriculture, tourism, and family-owned businesses

Why We Protect Agricultural Farmland

  • Preserves rural character of region
  • Protects water quality
  • Saves open space
  • Protects wildlife habitat
  • Strengthens county tax base
  • Increases identity and pride in the community
  • It's a finite and irreplaceable natural resource (fertile soils take thousands of years to develop)

Moore County Benefits

  • VAD's will accomplish the Land Use Plan's primary goal to preserve and protect our rural agricultural nature.
  • Somewhat of a tourist county, VAD's will inform new landowners of farm presence and the potential of dust, noise, and smells associated with farming (Moore County is 4th in State in poultry production).
  • VAD's will strengthen the county's tax base.
  • VAD Ordinance July 19, 2016 (PDF)
  • VAD Application (online form)
  • Meetings changed to quarterly as of February 18, 2014

VAD Board Members

  • Glenn Bradley, Chairman
  • Tim McDonald, Vice Chairman
  • Bradley Ritter
  • Doug Reagan
  • Reid Whitaker
  • Kim Geddes
  • Greg Hayes

Cost Share Program

North Carolina Agriculture Cost Share

The major cause of water quality problems in North Carolina and in the United States is "non point source" pollution. In many places across our state, damage to our water resources comes from soil erosion, excessive fertilizer use, animal waste contamination, and improper use of agricultural chemicals.

The North Carolina Agriculture Cost Share Program was established in 1984 to help reduce the sources of agricultural non point pollution in North Carolina's waters. The Cost Share program helps owners and renters of established agricultural operations improve their on-farm management by using Best Management Practices, also called BMPS. These BMPs include vegetative, structural, or management systems that can improve the efficiency of farming operations. The results can make farmers more productive while reducing the potential for polluting surface and groundwater.

The District, in conjunction with Natural Resources Conservation Service provides free technical assistance to farmers who are willing to implement BMPs to help improve ground and surface water quality.

The North Carolina Soil and Water Conservation Commission designates the BMPs eligible for Cost Share funds and allocates money each year to the Soil and Water Conservation District for Cost Share contracts.

Fill out the North Carolina Agriculture Cost Share Program Application (PDF) to sign up for Cost Share Assistance.

Natural Resources Conservation

The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture, provides technical assistance to the Moore Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) in order to help the District implements its conservation program. The NRCS was formed as the Soil Erosion Service in the early 1930s after the "dust bowl" era in which millions of tons of topsoil was blown or eroded away in the Midwest and Southwest portions of the country. The Soil Erosion Service soon became the Soil Conservation Service (SCS), but its charge was the same-to save invaluable topsoil in order for agricultural land to remain as productive as possible and to provide technical assistance to farmers to solve soil erosion problems. Now, since becoming the NRCS in 1993, the agency has expanded its focus on natural resource problems to include not only soil erosion but also water quality, wetlands, wildlife habitat, and forestry-all while maintaining the personal technical assistance to producers that helped found the agency. The Moore County NRCS assistance comes from Angela Little, District Conservationist.

Conservation Programs

  • Conservation Technical Assistance (CTA) serves as the agency's basis for providing assistance to landowners and operators. CTA provides the staff, research, and technical standards for delivering technical assistance to support USDA and SWCD conservation efforts in Moore County and across the nation. Through the CTA program, NRCS assists individual land users, communities, and units of State and local government meet their goals for natural resource stewardship.
  • The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), since its inception in 1996, has served as NRCS' leading cost-sharing program for implementing conservation practices. Jointly administered with the Farm Service Agency, EQIP, through 5 or 10-year contracts, can provide up to 75% cost-sharing assistance to producers to implement conservation practices as part of a tract-based total resource management system. In North Carolina, about 70% of EQIP funds are allocated to 18 priority areas with special resource concerns. Moore County has received EQIP funding in the Deep River Priority Area. Examples of conservation practices installed with EQIP funding include Animal Waste Management and Long Term No-Till.
  • The Conservation Reserve Program-Standard and Conservation Reserve Program-Continuous provide agricultural landowners with incentives to remove high erosive and unproductive cropland from active production. The CRP-standard signup focuses primarily on forestry practices (planting of pines and hardwoods on cropland) to solve erosion problems and remove cropland from production. CRP standard allows landowners to receive per acre rental payments for a 10 to 15-year contract period. CRP-continuous provides incentive and rental payments to landowners to implement and maintain practices, which will help or improve water quality or enhance wildlife habitat. Examples of these practices are filter strips, the establishment of permanent native grasses, and riparian buffers. Cropland must have been cropped at least 2 of the last 5 years in order to be eligible for either CRP program.