The District

The Freehold Soil Conservation District is part of the New Jersey Natural Resources Program. Our goal is to provide leadership and to administer programs to help people conserve, improve, and sustain our natural resources and environment. As a conservation district we offer a variety of services to residents of Middlesex and Monmouth Counties.

In response to growing concern for water quality, the District has become the primary local agency responsible for controlling nonpoint sources of pollution associated with construction, agriculture and mining. The technical services of the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service are made available through the District.

With ongoing cooperation between residents, contractors, developers, educators, landowners, farmers, municipalities, engineers and the general public, Freehold Soil Conservation District will help to ensure environmental resource quality for our citizens for years to come.

Additional information can be found by clicking on What is a New Jersey Soil Conservation District? brochure.

District History

In the 1930’s our nation was dealing with mounting erosion, floods and sky-blackening dust storms that swept across the country. Poor farming practices left large amounts of land exposed to the elements and erosion claimed huge amounts of topsoil. In 1937 President Roosevelt urged all states to encourage local participation in soil conservation and in June 1938 the Freehold Soil Conservation District was incorporated; the first district in the State of New Jersey.

In the early years, the main focus of the District was the implementation of conservation practices on farmland. This was accomplished by educating and assisting farmers on a cooperative basis. By the 1940’s the role of the District had expanded to include drainage work, irrigation design and flood control. In 1975 the New Jersey Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Act, Chapter 251, was established.

The current role of the Freehold District is to promote sound soil and water conservation practices on the land in order to protect our topsoil and water resources. Essentially, the Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Act requires that all land disturbance projects greater than 5,000 square feet on commercial, subdivided residential, mining, storage, landfill and utility sites submit a soil erosion control plan to the district. Once the plans are reviewed and deemed certified, the Freehold District Technical staff conducts inspections on the project sites to ensure compliance with Chapter 251 Standards.