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Technical Standards

WI Land+Water facilitates two collaborative groups that engage in the technical aspects of conservation practices across the state.  The WI Land+Water Technical Committee, consisting of several Land Conservation Department (LCD) staff, and the Standards Oversight Council, consisting of representatives from LCDs and state agencies involved in the implementation of conservation programs. Both committees work with partners to develop and maintain effective conservation practices for Wisconsin.

The Technical Committee serves as a sounding board for addressing technical issues with conservation practices such as conservation planning, inventory and evaluation tools, technical certification, and conservation practice and design implementation. The committee also coordinates county review comments on draft technical standards produced by other agencies.  This committee also offers input on trainings for conservation professionals and is in the process of creating a technical photo gallery of key conservation elements.  Contact the members of the Technical Committee by emailing technical@wisconsinlandwater.org.

Current Committee Members

Committee Advisors:
Mike Gilbertson (DNR)
Matthew Woodrow (DATCP)

The Standards Oversight Council (SOC) is a collaboration of conservation agencies that oversees a team approach in developing and maintaining technical standards for soil and water conservation practices in Wisconsin. Many federal, state, and local agencies rely on the same technical or practice standards to implement statewide conservation programs. However, this diverse group must deal with different mandates, goals, policies, deadlines, and political pressures. SOC is charged with working through these inherent challenges and overseeing the process for developing effective technical standards that protect Wisconsin’s natural resources. Through an interagency work planning process, SOC helps focus limited public resources where they are needed most.

The SOC governing body consists of representatives from the Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP), the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), University of Wisconsin Extension, and WI Land+Water. The SOC collaboration and their work is currently funded by NRCS, DNR, and DATCP, with contributions of staff time, expertise, and non-monetary resources from UW Extension, WI Land+Water, Department of Transportation, county land conservation department staff, and private sector technicians. Several county conservation departments also provide an annual donation. The SOC is a successful example on collaborating agencies and integrating resources to effectively address critical issues that protect our state’s resources.

The Council and the WI Land+Water Executive Director oversee the SOC Program Manager, who provides programmatic leadership, coordinates the standard work teams, and manages outreach and communication efforts. SOC is now working under the 2018-2019 Work Plan, which contains the more specific practice standard projects scheduled within that time-frame.

For more information on SOC, visit www.socwisconsin.org.