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SCS represents the Department on the Water Resource Council, River Basin Commissions, and River Basin Interagency Committees for coordination among Federal Departments and States.
This activity is carried out under the watershed and Flood Prevention Act, as amended, Public Law 83-566, August 5, 1954, (16 U.S.C. 1001-1008). The program consists of (a) making preliminary investigations to assess proposed small watershed projects in response to requests made by sponsoring local organizations and (b) assistance to sponsors in the development of watershed work plans. SCS is responsible for development of guiding principles and procedures.
Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations. Activities under this program include:
SCS administers watershed works of improvement authorized by the Flood Control Act of 1944 (33 U.S.C. 7016-1).
Flood prevention operations include planning and installing works of improvement for flood prevention and for the conservation, development, utilization, and disposal of water. This may also include the development of recreational facilities and the improvement of fish and wildlife habitat. Activities are authorized in 11 specific flood prevention projects covering about 11 million acres.
Emergency Operations authorized by Section 216
Emergency operations provide for the installation of emergency measures for runoff retardation and soil-erosion prevention, in cooperation with landowners and land users, as the Secretary deems necessary to safeguard lives and property from floods, drought, and the products of erosion on any watershed whenever fire, flood, or any other natural occurrence is causing or has caused a sudden impairment of that watershed.
Small Watersheds authorized by Public Law 83-566, as amended,
This program provides for cooperation with local sponsors, State, and other public agencies in the installation of planned works of improvement in approved watershed projects. Such works of improvement reduce erosion, floodwater, and sediment damage. They also further the conservation, development, utilization, and disposal of water, including the development of multipurpose facilities for such uses as recreation, improvement of fish and wildlife habitat, irrigation, and water supply to municipal and industrial users.
Loans are made to local organizations to help finance the local share of the cost of carrying out planned watershed and flood prevention works of improvement. Loans are made on an insured basis from the Agricultural Credit Insurance Fund administered by the Farmers Home Administration.
Great Plains Conservation Program
he Great Plains Conservation Program is authorized by Public Law 841021. as amended, (16, V.S.C. 590p (b)). The program's objective is to bring about a long-term solution to problems resulting from drought and the cultivation of land unsuited for sustained crop production in the 10 Great Plain States. Activities include:
1. Cost-sharing of permanent conservation practices under long-term contracts with farmers and ranchers in designated counties in the 10 Great Plain States.
2. Cost-share programing and contract administration and technical assistance to help make needed land use adjustments and install conservation measures specified in basic conservation plans in accordance with contract schedules.
Resource Conservation and Development Program
Section 102 of the Food and Agriculture Act of 1962 (Public Law 87-703), (16 U.S.C. 1010-1011) provided authority to assist locally sponsored Resource Conservation and Development Projects to conduct programs of land conservation and use in areas where acceleration of present conservation activities are needed and where projects add economic opportunities to the people. The FY 1982 budget proposes to phase out the current program. Activity for FY 1982 will be limited to:
1. Technical assistance and cost-share assistance to sponsors, local groups, and individuals to complete work started in prior years.
2. Loan services for resource improvements and developments in approved projects. Loans are made on an insured basis from the Agricultural Credit Insurance Fund administered by the Farmers Home Administration.
Program Administration: The Soil Conservation Service maintains its central office in Washington, D.C. Most of its activities are carried out in about 3,050 field offices in the 50 States and Puerto Rico. Four technical service centers provide program coordination and technical support. This includes services such as engineering, watershed planning, cartographic work, soil mechanics laboratories, information, professional help in agronomy, soils, biology, forestry, plant materials, range conservation, and other technical work. As of September 30, 1980, there were 13, 198 full-time employees and 2,552 part-time, intermittent, and other employees. Of these, 440 full-time employees and 59 other employees were located in the Headquarters.