Home » $4.3 million in tobacco settlement funds to select Kentucky farms

$4.3 million in tobacco settlement funds to select Kentucky farms

387 projects to receive funding through the Kentucky Soil and Water Conservation Commission

FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Energy and Environment Cabinet Secretary announced that the Kentucky Soil and Water Conservation Commission has selected 387 Kentucky farm projects in 85 counties to receive a total of $4,301,038 in tobacco settlement funds.

The money will be used to promote practices that protect water quality and prevent soil erosion. Projects include alternative water sources for livestock, grassed waterways, fencing to facilitate rotational grazing and cover crops.

The Soil and Water Conservation Commission is administered by the Division of Conservation, within the Kentucky Department for Natural Resources. Tobacco Master Settlement funds are appropriated each year by the General Assembly to support the program.

Funds are distributed with the assistance of the 121 Soil and Water Conservation Districts across Kentucky, which work with local farmers to verify and submit proposed projects for consideration. Award recipients have two years to complete their projects.

The Conservation Commission has obligated more than $175 million in state cost-share funding in the past 28 years. In 2021, reimbursements were made for the completion of 540 projects. These included 3,856 acres of cover crop, more than 55 miles of fencing, 764,000 square feet of grassed waterway and 28 miles of pipeline to supply 240 waterers.

The most recent list of applications approved by county can be seen here.

Soil and Water Conservation Commission chair Danny Shipley, a farmer in Allen County, said the program benefits Kentucky farmers and the commonwealth.

“Many farmers would be unable to improve their farms without these funds,” Shipley said. “These dollars help conserve soils and improve water quality, but they also turn over in the economy and improve our local communities.”

“We’re honored to be able to support our farmers through this and many other programs,” Secretary Goodman said. “By working together, we’re improving soil and water quality and helping our farmers improve productivity in the process.”

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