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Cost-Share Program

Missoula Conservation District offers a Cost-Share program for natural resource improvement projects within Missoula County.

The 2018 Cost-Share Program is closed. Check back for updates to Missoula Conservation District grants for 2019.

Basic Qualifications:

  • The project must improve natural resources within Missoula County and must benefit a public resource
  • Only on-the-ground practices are eligible (research does not qualify)
  • All work and material purchases must occur following project approval and contract agreement
  • Landowner signature is required if the applicant is not the landowner
  • Applications that are insufficiently detailed or do not provide the required information will not be reviewed (property map and cost estimates must be included – see example of completed application below)
  • Complete applications must be received before 4:00 pm on Friday, September 15, 2017

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Attendance at Missoula Conservation District or partner trainings and workshops, such as:
    1) Western Montana Grazing and Agriculture Conference, 2) Soil Health Workshops, 3) Forest Stewardship Class, 4) Riparian Planting, 5) Low Stress Stock Handling
  • Written Conservation/Management Plan
  • Previously demonstrated conservation management
  • Early applications are highly encouraged to ensure effective review prior to snowfall


Maximum awards are $5,000 per landowner per year. Depending on ranking and available funds, some projects may be denied or approved for less than the requested Cost-Share amount.

Cost-Share recipients are funded through reimbursements only. To receive awards, grantees must complete the project as agreed in the grant contract. The grantee must cover all costs above the agreed District share. The grantee portion can be in the form of cash, in-kind services (i.e., labor), or matching grant funds (however, grant funds cannot exceed the cost of the project).


  • Only 1 application is allowed per person, group, business, etc.
  • All projects must be completed within 1-year of approval
  • Applicants who apply in consecutive years, may be funded for a maximum of 3 projects over a 5-year time period
  • Only the highest ranked projects receive $5,000
  • Awards are limited to a maximum of $10,000 over a 5-year time period

Eligible Practices:

Eligible practices must benefit natural resources. Incorporating multiple conservation practices, or completing a practice that is part of an overall conservation plan is highly encouraged. For planning assistance, please review the Technical Resource List located on the back of the application.

Any practice marked below in bold is a priority practice. Many of the below-mentioned practices may improve soil, water, air, vegetation, and wildlife habitat. Natural resource improvement practices not listed may also be considered.

Stream & Fisheries Improvements – Eligible up to 75% Cost-Share

  • Planting riparian vegetation
  • Streambank or shoreline restoration
  • Fish screen installation
  • Stream crossing replacement or upgrade (i.e., bridge or culvert)
  • Diversion replacement or upgrade
  • Fencing of riparian areas for livestock management
  • Grade stabilization structures (to address erosion and head cutting)
  • Irrigation delivery or ditch upgrade
  • Stream channel stabilization
  • Filter strips (vegetation planted to remove sediment, organic matter, or other pollutants from run-off or wastewater)

Grazing Management – Eligible up to 50% Cost-Share

  • Spring development
  • Stock water tank and pipeline
  • Cross fencing
  • Grass and forb seeding*

Wildlife Habitat Improvements – Eligible up to 50% Cost-Share

  • Restoring and promoting native plant communities
  • Wetland restoration
  • Wildlife habitat improvement (improving food, water or cover for wildlife)
  • Wildlife fencing for commercial operations

Uplands Improvement – Eligible up to 50% Cost-Share

  • Grass and forb seeding*
  • Tree/shrub planting
  • Forest disease reduction (insect & pest treatment)
  • Forest stand improvement (pre-commercial thinning, ladder-fuel reduction, slash disposal on non-residential property only)

*No-till drill available for rent

Note: Those with 310 violations within the past 10 years may not apply for Cost-Share awards.

Changes to 2018 Weed Funding: Missoula Conservation District will no longer directly fund weed control projects.  Instead, the District will now offer a matched grant through Missoula County Weed District’s 2018 Landowner Grant. Applicants may be eligible to receive up to $1,000 in matched funds for priority 1 and 2 weed control, as listed on the Weed District website. Weed District grant applications do not follow the Missoula Conservation District Cost-Share application timeline. Weed District pre-applications are due December 1, 2017. Visit the Weed District website for more information.

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