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ParkingLot Established in 1967 under New York state law by the then County Board of Supervisors, the Westchester County Soil and Water Conservation District is charged with developing and carrying out soil, water and related natural resources conservation, management and educational activities. Professionals from the county Planning Department provide administrative and technical support to the District’s seven-member citizen board of directors.

Annual Work Plan and Report

The district’s soil and water conservation and management objectives are generally focused on suburban and urban environments. As described in the district's Annual Report, the objectives are also tailored to the unique ecological diversity of Westchester County, where the Hudson River, Long Island Sound and Croton River watersheds define its borders and character. The district considers a wide range of concerns, such as:

  • restoring streams, floodplains, freshwater and tidal wetlands, and other natural resources to improve water quality and fish and wildlife habitat
  • retrofitting and installing stormwater management practices to improve water quality and control excessive stormwater runoff
  • protecting and managing streams, wetlands, ponds, lakes, reservoirs and floodplains
  • controlling erosion and sedimentation, and polluted stormwater runoff by advocating the use of best management practices through public education and outreach
  • encouraging and facilitating the development and implementation of soil and water resource conservation practices and strategies based on watershed-wide perspectives and analyses
  • promoting sound soil and water resource conservation techniques and natural resource stewardship through public outreach and education

The district’s Work Plan focuses on:

  • implementing natural resources restoration and storm water management projects
  • seeking non-county funding for additional projects
  • installing educational signs at completed project sites
  • continuing a conservation achievement awards program
  • sponsoring public education and professional development opportunities

Pond and Lake Management Workshop

Presentations from the Soil and Water Conservation District’s December 7, 2017 “Pond and Lake Management Workshop” in White Plains are listed below:

Introduction To The Ecology Of Ponds, Lakes, and Reservoirs by Stephen J. Souza, Ph.D, Founder, Princeton Hydro, LLC, and Instructor at Temple, Rutgers and Montclair State Universities

Pond and Lake Stewardship:What You Can Do About Aquatic Invasive Plants by Catherine McGlynn, Ph.D., Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

The Lakes Of Westchester County: What We Know And What You Can Do To Help by Scott Kishbaugh, P.E., Chief, Lake Monitoring and Assessment Section, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

Dealing With Stormwater: A Practical Approach by Jeremy Farrell, Ph.D., Water Quality Specialist, Lake George Association, and Post-Doctoral Research Associate, DFWI

Design And Implementation Of A Lake Management Plan by Stephen J. Souza, Ph.D, Founder, Princeton Hydro, LLC, and Instructor at Temple, Rutgers and Montclair State Universities

The District continues its partnership with regional, state and federal agencies and organizations, as well as municipalities, to further mutual soil and water conservation and management goals and objectives. District and Planning Department staff also continue to provide technical services and provide information to the public, including the preparation of soil group worksheets for agricultural tax re-assessments. 

District Celebrates 50th Anniversary

SWCD50Proc

The Soil and Water Conservation District turned 50 in 2017. The district was established in 1967 by an act of the then Westchester County Board of Supervisors (modern-day Board of Legislators) under the authority of the New York State Soil and Water Conservation District Law. At the Board of Directors meeting in July 2017, proclamations were presented by representatives of the Westchester County Board of Legislators and Westchester County Executive’s Office, a state legislative resolution was presented by a representative of the New York State Senate, and a congratulatory letter was presented by a representative of the Watershed Agricultural Council.

Hudson Valley Regional Envirothon 2017

Recipients of Hudson Valley Regional Envirothon 2017The Soil and Water Conservation District continued its long-standing co-sponsorship of the Hudson Valley Regional Envirothon. As it has for more than the past decade, Westchester County had the most high schools and teams participating in the regional Envirothon than any other county in the lower Hudson River valley.

Children in garden Work program activities:

Technical services:

  • Preparing Soil Group Worksheets - go to worksheet form.
  • Interpreting the USDA-NRCS Soil Survey of Putnam and Westchester Counties
  • Stormwater management and water quality protection, including the New York State Stormwater Management Design Manual and New York State Standards and Specifications for Erosion and Sediment Control
  • Natural resources and ecosystem protection and management
  • Environmental mapping, such as national wetlands inventory, tidal wetlands, coastal erosion hazard areas, flood zone, and historic aerial photographs
  • Analyses of soil content and characteristics may be made through Cornell University’s Soil Health webpage 

 Publications available online:

Model ordinances:

Guidance documents:

Related links:

For more information, please contact Robert Doscher, District Manager/Principal Environmental Planner, at (914) 995-4423 or .