NB_180_21_1 - NB 180-21-1 CPA – Transition Plan for Implementation of 180-GM-409, “Conservation Planning Policy”
NB 180-21-1 CPA – Transition Plan for Implementation of 180-GM-409, “Conservation Planning Policy”
National Bulletin: 180-21-1   Date: November 4, 2020  
Subject: CPA – Transition Plan for Implementation of 180-GM-409, “Conservation Planning Policy"

Purpose.   To remind States of the transition plan for implementation of conservation planner designation requirements in Title 180, General Manual, Part 409, “Conservation Planning Policy.”
Expiration Date.  December 31, 2021  
Background.   National Bulletin 180-19-3, “Reminder of Transmission Plan for Implementation of Title 180-GM-409, Conservation Planning Policy” extended the original transition plan for conservation planner designations through the year 2021. That national bulletin expired on September 30, 2020, and the information needs to be refreshed to reiterate the guidance.        

Explanation.   For individuals who were designated as apprentice conservation planner, certified conservation planner, master certified conservation planner, or technical specialist planner in the National Conservation Planner Database prior to January 2017, all requirements for their current designation must be completed by January 1, 2022. Individuals not completing the requirements for their current conservation planner designation by the end of this 5-year transition period will have their current planner role designation suspended until the role designation requirements are completed or the individual is assigned to another planner role that can be met with their qualifications.

During the above transition period, completing the “Water Quality – Resource Assessment” Employee Development Section (EDS, previously NEDC) course prior to February 1, 2017, will satisfy the requirements for the Water Quality Webinar Series courses for all planner designations.

National proficiency exams are available in AgLearn for many of the required planner designation courses. Passing a proficiency exam for a required course counts as meeting the course requirement. In AgLearn, search for “Proficiency Exam” under the “Find Learning” tab to see what exams are available.     

Contact.   Please direct any questions to Aaron Lauster, Natural Resource specialist, Conservation Planning Branch, at aaron.lauster@usda.gov.    


Deputy Chief for Programs
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