During the development of the Voluntary Stewardship Program in our county, the Work Group examined existing watershed management plans, the county critical area maps, and other resources. After many months of hard work, the plan was completed and submitted to the state. Now, the state has approved the VSP Work Plan! You can find the plan by selecting Walla Walla on the state map at the State Conservation Commission website. If you want to see more general information and a list of Frequently Asked Questions, go to the main page for VSP. You may also view the maps below which are incorporated in the final plan. You can use this map to find the critical areas of parcels in the county. (This map uses public information and does not include any personal or private information.) Next, the County and the Conservation District will begin the big task of implementing our locally developed VSP Work Plan.
The VSP Local Work Group drafted the plan after more than a year of public meetings and discussion. WWCCD sought additional comments before the plan was finalized and submitted to the state level for review. But members of the public are always welcome to contact us at any time for more information. While the plan was under development, the Work Group met regularly. Now there will be an annual meeting to report progress. The minutes of recent meetings are listed below.
The Washington Conservation Commission has more information on the statewide VSP program. Other approved plans are also available at the Commission website.
First Foods-River Vision Presentation for VSP At the September 2016 meeting of the Work Group, Chris Marks and David Haire of the CTUIR gave this presentation showing that restoring First Foods and the River Vision are the driving forces behind the conservation and restoration work of the CTUIR. This was followed by discussion of how these align with the goals of VSP.
VSP has two overarching goals: protection of critical areas and maintaining the viability of agriculture. Two state agencies have released documents to help local Work Groups define agriculture viability. The Voluntary Stewardship Agriculture Viability (draft) has been released by the Conservation Commission and the Washington Agriculture 2020 Strategic Plan was released by the state Department of Agriculture.
Three agencies have released the following Fact Sheets to help the public understand VSP:
- From the Conservation Commission: The Voluntary Stewardship Program
- From Washington State University Extension: Impact Report: VSP
- From The Farm Bureau: VSP: A Common Sense Approach