The commission unanimously approved a petition made by the conservation districts to consolidate the three local districts during their Sept. 20 commission meeting.
The three districts have been working toward consolidation since January of this year. The new district will be known as the Grant County Conservation District.
According to a press release, the move to consolidate came after an analysis of each district's operations, goals and resources. Each district's supervisors then determined the most effective way to serve their constituents was to join forces with each other.
"The other 14 supervisors and I see great potential and growth as the new Grant County
Conservation District," said Boe Clausen, a Warden farmer and district supervisor.
According to Washington State Conservation Commission regional manager Bill Eller, the districts do not anticipate any reductions in their staff.
The consolidated district has a new business plan that will expand staff and funding sources to better develop their programs.
The number of volunteer supervisors on the new district's board will be reduced, from 15 to five, over the next four years. Each district currently has three elected supervisor positions and two state-appointed positions.
Current district supervisors will continue to serve until each position's term expires.
"With limited resources at the state level, all conservation districts are looking for ways to become more efficient while maintaining services for landowners," said Mark Clark, executive director of the commission.
The Washington State Secretary of State must issue a new certificate of organization, naming and describing the new consolidated conservation district to complete the process.