policy advisories

Policy Advisory Background

The Washington State Conservation Commission (Commission) is empowered to establish policies and procedures for implementing the Voluntary Stewardship Program (VSP).[1] The VSP is codified in RCW Chapter 36.70A.700 and the Commission administers the VSP.[2] 

Under VSP, the Commission is charged with establishing the Statewide Advisory Committee (SAC).[3] “The role of the statewide advisory committee is to advise the Commission and other agencies involved in the development and operation of the program.”[4] The Commission, after consultation with the VSP SAC, provides this advisory to the VSP county work groups to advise them on the roles and reporting obligations during VSP implementation. 

The SAC is intended to be comprised of a total of eight individuals, with two representatives each for counties, agricultural organizations, environmental organizations, and invited tribal governments.[5] 

The Commission has a number of other duties in the VSP that relate to the SAC including: 

  • Provide administrative support for the program's statewide advisory committee in its work.[6]      
  • Maintain a website about the program that includes times, locations, and agenda information for meetings of the statewide advisory committee;[7]
  • Conduct a review of the program beginning in 2017 in conjunction with the statewide advisory committee and every five years thereafter, and report its findings to the legislature by December 1;[8]
  • Consult with the Statewide Advisory Committee upon receipt of a report by a watershed     workgroup under RCW 36.70A.720(2)(b);[9] and
  • Consult with the statewide advisory committee and other state agencies, not later than August 31, 2015, and each August 31 every two years thereafter, and report to the Washington State Legislature and each county that has elected under RCW 36.70A.710 to participate in the program on the participating watersheds that have received adequate funding to establish and implement the program.[10]

[1] RCW36.70A.705(2)(a)

[2] RCW36.70A.705(1)

[3] RCW36.70A.745

[4] RCW36.70A.745(2)

[5] RCW36.70A.745(1)(a)

[6] RCW36.70A.705(2)(h)

[7] RCW36.70A.705(2)(i)

[8] RCW36.70A.705(2)(k)

[9] RCW36.70A.730

[10] RCW36.70A.740(4)

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Opportunities to Get Involved

VSP Statewide Advisory Committee (SAC) and VSP Technical Panel (TP) work at the state-level to establish VSP policies, procedures, and review work plans and reports.