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The Kentucky Soil Erosion and Water Quality Cost Share Program and the Kentucky Soil Stewardship Program were created to help agricultural operations protect the soil and water resources of Kentucky and to implement their agriculture water quality plans. The program helps landowners address existing soil erosion, water quality and other environmental problems associated with their farming or woodland operation.

The 1994 Kentucky General Assembly established this financial and technical assistance program. Kentucky Revised Statute 146.115 establishes that funds be administered by local conservation districts and the Kentucky Soil and Water Conservation Commission with priority given to animal waste-related problems, agricultural district participants and to producers who have their Agriculture Water Quality plans on file with their local conservation districts. Funding comes from the Kentucky General Assembly through direct appropriations to the program from the Tobacco Settlement Funds and from funds provided by the Kentucky Department of Agriculture.

Practices eligible for cost share include, but are not limited to: animal mortality and composting facilities, critical area planting, diversion, filter strip, grade stabilization structure, grassed waterway, livestock heavy use areas, livestock water facilities, riparian buffers, stream crossing, roof runoff and water storage structures, waste storage facilities, water and sediment control basin, pasture and hay planting, spring development, cover crop. The most recent cost share handbook is listed in the documents below.

Applications are currently being accepted.  The Soil and Water Conservation Commission voted in 2012 to have continuous sign ups.  Ranking of applications will be performed once each year on the state level by the Kentucky Soil and Water Conservation Commission at the Kentucky Division of Conservation in Frankfort. Approval of applications is based on a statewide ranking criteria and the availability of funds. Cost share rates are a maximum of 75 percent of the actual installation cost of the practice not to exceed $20,000 per year.

The most recent list of applications approved by county can be seen here​.

Conservation districts can click here to enter applications.

For more information, contact Jay Nelson​


SCS Approved Application Tracking
Kentucky State Cost Share Application eForm User Guide
2022 State Cost Share Ranking Priority List.docx
2022 Cost Share Practice Worksheet
2023 Kentucky Soil and Water Cost Share Program Payment Form
Kentucky Soil Erosion & Water Quality Cost-Share Practice Handbook (2024)
2019 Kentucky Soil and Water Cost Share Program Application
Flow Chart of Working a State Cost Share Application.docx
Technical Guidance for Fence Line Feeder Heavy Use Area
Technical Guidance for Winter Heavy Use Feeding Area
Owner-Tenant Agreement Example
2021 Kentucky Soil and Water Quality State Cost Share Training Presentation
2022 SCS District Forms Workbook
KyNMP Overview Presentation
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