eNewsletter| July Edition
In this month's edition:

  • Landowners impacted by 2017 fires: conservation $ available!
  • July Team Spotlight: Jessica Pollitz, Engineer
  • Have a passion for oaks?
  • August 1: Demo workshop II with Jackson Family Wines
What's New at Your RCD
Attention: Funding available to assist fire-impacted properties!
Grant funds are available for projects that reduce erosion and water quality concerns in fire-impacted areas of Sonoma County.

Potentially fundable projects include:   
  • Replacement of burned culverts
  • Unsurfaced Road improvements (ditch relief culverts, road reshaping/ outsloping, rolling dips)
  • Removal of invasive plants and revegetating with native plants along burned riparian areas
  • Streambank stabilization/restoration
  • Upland gully or headcut repair
  • Revegetating sensitive/erosion-prone areas
  • Cross-fence replacement
  • Installation of livestock riparian fencing

Who is eligible?
Anyone’s whose property was impacted by the 2017 Nuns and Tubbs fires. Click on map for reference.

What projects qualify?
Projects that implement conservation practices that reduce potential non-point sources of pollution (erosion, stormwater runoff, chemical contaminant runoff) into associated waterways.

Cost Share Requirement
Cost share (typically 15% of project cost) can be waived for projects that respond to fire impacts.

How do I apply for funding? 
Please fill out the landowner inquiry form here! Or visit https://sonomarcd.org/resources/fire-recovery/ to fill out an inquiry form and request an initial site visit with RCD staff.

How do I get selected for funding?
High priority projects will receive funding. A technical advisory committee (TAC) reviews all applications and then ranks them using a grant specific selection criteria. This will require a site visit this fall/winter.

Please contact us by September 6, 2019 to be considered for this funding. Construction will occur in summer of 2020 and 2021.

Funding for this project has been provided in full or in part by the USEPA and the State Water Board under the Federal Nonpoint Source Pollution Control Program (CWA Section 319).
Team spotlight
Meet Jessica Pollitz, Engineer.

Jessica has been with the RCD for one year this month! As Engineer, she designs various resource enhancement projects including rainwater catchment, drainage improvements, and erosion repairs. Jessica also represents the RCD within the larger resource community by participating in Technical Advisory Committees for a variety of watershed restoration projects.

"I love working for people while helping the environment at the same time!" she said, when asked about her favorite aspect of her job. She continued with, "It is truly a dream to have a job where protecting natural resources is our primary concern, but we also get a chance to engage with our local community by helping them enhance their properties."

Jessica's passion for using engineering to help others was solidified when she began volunteering with Engineers Without Borders in college. Through EWB, she worked on projects both locally and internationally, primarily focusing on providing access to clean drinking water and sanitation. She said that "working at the RCD seemed to be a beautiful coalescence of merging my desire to help others in a way that also helps the planet."

Something that you might not know about Jessica is that she has visited all 50 Sonoma County Regional Parks with her husband and her two Siberian huskies (of course only taking the huskies to the parks that allowed dogs!).

Community Engagement
Passionate about oaks?
Are you interested in planting native oak trees at your property, or know someone that might be? Do you have a good site to collect acorns this fall? We are working to identify sites in the Petaluma River, Russian River, and Sonoma Creek watersheds to plant oak woodland plants. Of greatest interest are locations that lost oaks in the fires of 2017 or see historical oak woodland habitat diminishing. We are evaluating sites of various sizes to accommodate plantings: from a few trees to larger properties that could home more than a hundred trees!

Please email Keith Abeles at kabeles@sonomarcd.org or call 707-569-1448 xtn 112 to let us know about potential sites or discuss the program further.
Events & Workshops
Demo Workshop II with Jackson Family Wines August 1st
Tillage & Compost in the Vineyard
Thursday, August 1
9:00 am – 11:30 am
La Crema Estate at Saralee’s Vineyard
3575 Slusser Road, Windsor, CA 95492

Sonoma RCD and Jackson Family Wines invite growers to come learn the latest findings from their Healthy Soils Demonstration Project! This field trial, started in 2018 at Saralee’s Vineyard, is looking at how tillage frequency and compost application influences soil health and productivity in a working vineyard. The workshop will include: a presentation by technical advisor Dr. Josh Beniston on current insights from soil health data gathered so far and a field tour of the test plots and discussion of practice adoption pros and cons with the vineyard manager.

A more detailed agenda will be posted on our website. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn more about boosting soil health in your own vineyard! QUESTIONS? Please contact Anya Starovoytov, project manager at (707) 569-1448 ext 109 or email astarovoytov@sonomarcd.org

The 2017 Healthy Soils Demonstration Project is funded by the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Funds and is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing GHG emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment.

20th Annual Sustainable Winegrowing Field Day
Friday, July 26
7:00 am – 2:00 pm
Sonoma County Winegrowers
3245 Guerneville Rd, Santa Rosa

On Friday, July 26 from 7:00 am - 2:00 pm Sonoma County Winegrowers is hosting the annual Sustainable Winegrowing Field Day at their new offices, located at 3245 Guerneville Road in Santa Rosa.

With the ever-increasing cost and shortage of qualified labor, the desire to economize vineyard operations via mechanization has become increasingly important. A focus of the agenda will be discussing the impacts of vineyard mechanization on labor, vineyard management efficiency, and grape quality. The Sonoma RCD will have a booth to share the lastest services we have for our local winegrape growers - come say hello!

Attend a technical workshop to receive the latest science-based information on how to best manage your soil, water and wildlife on
your property.
With a tax deducible donation you can support conservation projects that protects water resources, improves soil health + restores habitat for endangered species.
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