Farm bureau, Choctaw Lake association awarded grant


Left to right, Steve Berk, Organization Director for Madison County for the Ohio Farm Bureau; Barb Niemeyer, Choctaw Lake Board of Trustees; and Dale Rapp, Madison County Farm Bureau President.

The Ohio Farm Bureau and Choctaw Lake Property Owners Association have received a grant to improve water quality in the local watershed, it was announced this week.

The matching funds grant in the amount of $17,000 comes from the Ohio Farm Bureau’s County Water Quality Initiative Grant Program. The grant was written by Barb Niemeyer, a member of the Choctaw Lake Board of Trustees.

Niemeyer said the money will be used to help fund a wetlands feasibility study for Choctaw Lake. The grant will also provide for equipment, seeds, technology support or professional advice for watershed land owners to make improvements that will directly impact water quality.

The Madison County Farm Bureau is supporting these efforts by funding a workshop to be held on Tuesday, July 28.

“The partnership of the Ohio Farm Bureau, Madison County Farm Bureau and Choctaw Lake Property Owners Association is a groundbreaking collaboration to address water quality issues,” Niemeyer stated in a release. “It meets the goals of the Ohio Farm Bureau to expand and solidify local cooperative partnerships.”

A group was formed in May to discuss water quality issues within the watershed and how they could work together to form a voluntary, cooperative partnership. Those in attendance were: Steve Berk, organization director for Madison County for the Ohio Farm Bureau; Jordan Hoewischer, Ohio Farm Bureau; Julia Cumming, Madison County Soil and Water Conservation District; Jereme Best, Clark County Soil and Water Conservation District; and Barb Niemeyer and Jim Swihart, Choctaw Lake Water Quality Committee.

A workshop for watershed land owners, Choctaw Lake property owners and interested parties will be held Tuesday, July 28, from 7:30 a.m. until noon at the Choctaw Lake Lodge. Breakfast is included. The workshop will include presentations on Choctaw Lake’s efforts to improve water quality, USDA Conservation Programs, soil health and cover crops.

The workshop is sponsored by Madison County Farm Bureau, Clark and Madison County Soil and Water Conservation Districts, Natural Resources Conservation Service and Choctaw Lake Property Owners Association.

To register for the workshop call 800-451-8908 by Tuesday, July 21 or email madison@ofbf.org.

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