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Services Provided by Catawba Soil & Water Conservation District

Randy Willis
Contact: Randy Willis
District Administrator
Phone: (828) 465-8950
Email Randy Willis


mapAgricultural Resources Center
1175 S Brady Avenue
Newton, NC 28658

Monday - Friday
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m

The purpose of the Catawba Soil and Water Conservation District is to provide leadership in formulating a plan of conservation and protection for soil and water in the county.

The definition of conservation is "protect from loss or waste."

Soil and water are two of our most precious natural resources. They are essential in providing food, clothing and shelter.

Erosion is the greatest enemy of soil; pollution is the greatest enemy of water.

Topsoil contains many nutrients necessary for plant growth. Nature replaces it, but very slowly. It takes an average of 500 years for one inch of topsoil to form. Unprotected soil erodes at an alarming rate. Uncontrolled water carries tons of topsoil into nearby streams.

The sediment, containing pesticides, herbicides and other pollutants, not only clogs the stream but lowers the water quality as well.

The District works with the Natural Resources Conservation Service and other agencies to assist and educate land owners and users in proper use of land relating to conservation of soil and water.

The Catawba SWCD Board of Supervisors meets on the first Friday morning of each month at the district office in the Agricultural Resources Building. All meetings are open to the public.

All services are free of charge.


Technical assistance is provided to individuals, groups, or corporations on soil and water related concerns. Technical assistance is provided to the farming community on: cropland management, pasture management, installation of Best Management Practices (BMP's) to protect soil from eroding and improve water quality, planning and implementation of practices for compliance with the Food Security Act, animal waste utilization plans and certification for compliance with the Division of Water Quality's .0200 regulations.

Technical and financial assistance are available for installing BMP's through the North Carolina Agriculture Cost Share Program to improve water quality. The federal Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP) provides technical and financial assistance to landowners to address environmental concerns. BMP's for each of these programs include: animal waste management systems, critical area stabilization, diversions, field borders, filter strips, grassed waterways, stock trails, stream crossings, stripcropping, spring developments, watering tanks, and fencing streambanks.


  • Animal waste management systems
  • Critical area stabilization
  • Diversions
  • Grassed waterways
  • No-till, Minimum-till, Conservation-tillage
  • No-till sod seeding of pastures and hayland
  • Pasture and hayland management
  • Strip cropping
  • Terraces
  • Woodland Management
  • Livestock Exclusion
  • Waste management plans
  • Heavy Use Areas
  • Stock trails
  • Animal Mortality Composters
  • Incinerators
  • Stream crossings
  • Cross fencing
  • Nutrient management plan
  • Pest management plan
  • Alternate water sources for animals



  • Soil Information
  • Watershed information


  • Erosion control assistance
  • Assistance on drainage problems
  • Soil testing information
  • Recommendations for grass & ground covers


  • Soil information and maps
  • Erosion control information
  • Consulting assistance in the development of erosion control plans
  • Recommendations for temporary and permanent groundcovers


  • Review of subdivision plans for erosion control
  • Erosion control information
  • Soil information and land use planning
  • Prime and Important Farmland Maps
  • Catawba County Soil Survey
  • Flood Plain Management Studies
  • Review applications for Voluntary Ag. Districts
  • Involved with the Catawba County Paddle Trail System


  • Sponsor high school student to attend Resource Conservation Workshop at NCSU
  • Conservation education programs and materials
  • Erosion control assistance
  • Soil training
  • Sponsor education contests
  • Sponsor Conservation Field Days
  • Sponsor Area Envirothon teams
  • Provide educational resources and programming


  • Wildlife planning and enhancement
  • Fish pond stocking
  • Tree seedlings