RC & D Area
What is the Eastern Connecticut RC&D Area?
The Eastern Connecticut RC&D Area is in the north-central and eastern portion of Connecticut, and includes all of Tolland, Windham, Middlesex, and New London Counties, and a portion of Hartford County. The RC&D Area is coterminous with six regional planning agencies, and three of the five soil and water conservation districts.
This RC&D area is sponsored by the Soil and Water Conservation Districts, Regional Planning Agencies, and/or Councils of Government, along with member organizations including, but not limited to, the following:
(Picture: 2007 Eastern CT RC&D Annual Meeting in Lebanon, CT)
Ex-Officio Participation may include, but is not limited to, the following:
Encompassing 1,655,000 acres, the Eastern Connecticut RC&D Area is made up mostly of small towns surrounding urban areas. Nearly 57% of the area is forested and largely under private ownership. Agricultural ownership represents about 12% of the area. The remaining land use is split between urban lands and water (tidal and inland wetlands).
There has been a progressive decline in the number of farm operations in the area. At first, this decline was due to the absorption of farmland by other farms, and the amount of farmland acreage actually lost was minimal compared to the decrease in the number of farm units. This trend is no longer evident. Today, when farm operations are closed, the acreage is converted to non-farm uses and the land is lost from production.
Much recognition has been given to the importance of preserving and protecting the state’s agricultural lands for their value as a source of local food supply and for the aesthetic appeal they lend to the Connecticut landscape.
In the eastern section of the state, Connecticut has done much to develop its parks and recreation areas. Many scenic and recreational areas have been preserved for present and future generations to enjoy. However, in such a small, densely populated state, there is a limited land and water resource base. Continued growth and development is creating an increased need to conserve and preserve the character and quality of the physical environment. The growth in demand for swimming, boating, fishing, wildlife, camping, and trail activities indicates a need for additional facilities and the rehabilitation, preservation, and careful management of existing areas.
Eastern Connecticut has experienced economic changes brought on by energy costs, business cycles, and the shift in national growth away from the northeast to the southern and western regions. In response to these changes, Connecticut has substantially improved its competitive business environment and introduced targeted innovative programs to address the needs of urban centers.
This plan was developed by the Eastern Connecticut RC&D Council with the assistance of resource committees and numerous local, state, and federal agencies. It is a summary of facts and data revealing natural resource conditions which provide the framework for the future. The Eastern Connecticut RC&D objectives that follow provide the direction and emphasis of the RC&D area’s activities.
What is the Purpose of an Area Plan?
Planning and implementation are the central functions of an RC&D area. Strategic planning can improve the organization’s ability to capitalize on changing conditions, improve overall productivity, and make better strategic decisions that result in the implementation of a more efficient and effective program. A well developed area plan provides a basis and direction for the Council to serve the area to the best of its ability. The plan is open ended and dynamic, and outlines the tasks the council wants to accomplish. It identifies needs and opportunities, as well as broad and specific objectives to reach each goal.
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© 2013 Eastern Connecticut Resource Conservation and Development Area, Inc.