Today, January 14, Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the Gallatin Valley Land Trust had been selected to join a new federal program that would mix private and public funds in the name of conservation.

"The 2014 farm bill established a new program called the Regional Conservation Partnership Program," USDA spokesman Eric Sufferidge said. "It is an effort by Congress to help NRCS to establish partnerships, to provide funding, for the agency to expand partnerships and to increase our investment on conservation on the ground."

Only about a sixth of the submitted applications made it all the way to the final selection stage.

"There were over 663 proposals that were submitted through that request for proposals last spring," Sufferidge said. "The agency narrowed that down to a few more than 200 for full proposal consideration. There's somewhere around 100 to 110 projects that are actually being funded."

Approximately $3.7 millionwill be spent on the program’s stated goals in the Gallatin Valley, which are “to improve water quality, water quantity, and soil health.”

More From Newstalk KGVO 1290 AM & 98.3 FM