Voluntary Stewardship Program

The Voluntary Stewardship Program (VSP) provides an alternative, incentive-based approach for counties to address fundamental goals of the state’s Growth Management Act (GMA) to:

“Protect and enhance critical areas within the area where agricultural activities are conducted, while maintaining and improving the long-term viability of agriculture in the state of Washington and reducing the conversion of farmland to other uses.” — RCW 36.70A.700

We are interested in helping VSP watersheds achieve compliance with clean water requirements, and protect and restore critical areas. As members of the State-Level VSP Technical Panel, we attend regular meetings and review periodic reports submitted by participating counties.

The Washington State Conservation Commission (SCC) oversees and administers funding for counties to develop and implement VSP work plans. We provide input to SCC about whether goals and benchmarks of work plans are being met.

Resources for VSP planning and implementation

We provide electronic data and other planning and mapping resources to support counties that are planning under Washington’s Voluntary Stewardship Program (VSP).

While we are not able to participate in individual county-level VSP technical committees or regularly attend those meetings, we can provide the following information and technical support for these critical areas:

  • Wetlands
  • Critical aquifer recharge areas
  • Frequently-flooded areas

As well as:

  • Water improvement (clean water standards, including 303(d) listings, local plans, and TMDLs/nonpoint pollution)
  • Shoreline management

We also respond to specific technical questions and review sections of draft VSP work plans addressing our areas of expertise.

VSP planning and mapping resources