Rates & Charges

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Program of Work and Rate Budget

The Whatcom Conservation District submitted a proposed system of rates and charges for consideration by the Whatcom County Council to continue our important non-regulatory, stewardship and voluntary based work.

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Rate Study Report

Since 1946, the District has been on the forefront of productive agriculture, habitat restoration, and residential stewardship by providing free conservation services to private land managers and residents.  The District has developed programs and implemented projects to meet the demands of a diverse and changing environment. With a growing population and increased pressure on our natural resources, this proposal will ensure that services can continue to be provided to our local communities into the future.


Conservation districts work at the intersection of people and place, providing an ecological understanding and deep connection to the land, resources, and economy promoting responsible stewardship, sustainable land management and support for natural resource base economies.

  • Healthy Land is the foundation that grows our food, cleans our air and water, provides habitat, and a place to live and prosper.

  • Healthy Water supports agriculture, salmon populations, shellfish harvesting, and recreation.

  • Healthy People are the stewards of land and water, connected to their community, and inspired to protect what they value most.



Who is Whatcom Conservation District?

We are a unique government agency that serves all of Whatcom County.  Led by a local board of supervisors we have been empowering Whatcom County residents to conserve natural resources since 1946.  Subject to available resources, the District serves everyone whether you live in a city, on a farm, or in a forest.  Our strength comes from a long history of successful partnerships with local groups, agencies, and tribes.


How is District currently funded?

The District currently receives 100% of our funding from grants and contracts with various local, state, and federal agencies.  Historically, funding has come from the State legislature through the State Conservation Commission, but this has been declining.


How can the District ensure dependable funding for local priorities?

A District may propose to its county government a system of rates and charges on lands within its jurisdiction. The benefit of a local rates and charge will ensure funding for local priorities determined by our board and community when state and federal grant dollars do not. A rate may not exceed $5/parcel and 10¢/acre.


Why support a Rates and Charges?

A rates and charge would support continuance and enhancement of the following activities:

  • Serve everyone in Whatcom County (rural, urban and suburban) by providing science-based education, technical assistance, and financial incentives to support healthy land, air, water and people.

  • Maintain sustainable, profitable and productive local agriculture, fisheries, and other natural resource-based industries for future generations

  • Promote backyard stewardship by supporting native landscaping for wildlife and pollinator habitat improvement.  

  • Offer K-12 education on the principles of natural resource conservation, sustainable agriculture, and watershed health.

  • Support local farm infrastructure through partnerships and grants, to ensure the feasibility of locally produced food.

  • Nurture a deep connection to the land and resources of Whatcom County, connecting our urban and rural communities.

Would you like to view our current Long Range Plan