Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District

Fairfax County, Virginia


TTY 711

12055 Government Center Parkway
Suite 905, Fairfax, VA 22035

Willie Woode,
Executive Director

CAP/VCAP Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the Conservation Assistance Program and the Virginia Conservation Assistance Program. If this FAQ does not answer your question, please contact or call 703-324-1460 TTY 711.

How do I apply for cost-share?

Complete the electronic form on the Conservation Assistance Programs information page to request a site visit. Staff will review your request to determine if your property may be eligible for a CAP or VCAP practice.

What's the difference between CAP and VCAP?

CAP and VCAP were distinct programs but are now merged and the program utilizes both state and local funding. 

Where can I learn more about what kinds of projects are funded?

The Virginia Association of Soil & Water Conservation Districts webpage has descriptions of practices that are eligible for funding. 

Is there a limit to how many times I can apply for VCAP funds?

Yes, each parcel is limited to a lifetime approved application maximum of 2 practice types. Please reach out to District staff if you have any questions on eligibility of reapplication.

Can I work together with a neighbor to address a shared stormwater problem?

Yes! We encourage neighbors to work together. However, each will need to submit a separate application. Every situation is different so please contact us to discuss in more detail.

Can I apply directly to the state and bypass NVSWCD?

No. VCAP is a program that is governed by the Virginia Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts and implemented by each individual district in the state. Each district is allowed to place secondary considerations in addition to the general program guidelines for all of their projects.

I received a site visit, and submitted my application, but have not heard back for a couple of months. What should I do?

Please contact the program coordinators about the status of your application.

I plan on doing my project regardless of VCAP funding. If I start my project before receiving approval, will that prevent me from receiving funding after I submit my application?

Yes. We do NOT allow projects to be started prior to approval. If you start your project after submitting an application but before receiving approval, you will be removed from the list and your application will become void.

What happens if I have to move and cannot fulfill the entirety of the 10-year maintenance agreement?

You are responsible for the functioning of the project for 10 years unless you either transfer the remainder of the maintenance agreement to the new property owner or pay back a prorated amount of the cost-share received. Please contact NVSWCD to initiate a transfer/termination of agreement.

I am representing a Civic Association/Homeowner’s Association, or Place of Worship. Are these groups eligible to pursue projects on common land?

Yes! You may complete the site visit request form on behalf of your organization.

How is the cost share amount determined?

The program is based on reimbursement of actual costs of installing the practice. Cost share amounts vary per practice and a list of current rates is available from NVSWCD.

When do I receive the funds for my project?

Your practice will first be inspected by NVSWCD and reimbursement approval by the board will be based on whether the installed practice aligns with the approved design. 

What if my project costs more than the approved estimate in the application?

The final cost share amount is based on the invoices submitted. If the actual cost is higher than the estimate, unfortunately, you cannot receive more than the cost share amount approved at the time of application. If the actual cost is lower, the cost share amount may be reduced. 

I am required by the county ordinance to install a stormwater BMP (Best Management Practice) as a result of construction. Will VCAP help fund projects that need to be installed as part of county/municipal requirements?

No. VCAP only offers cost-share to individuals who are voluntarily installing practices on their properties. We also do not help cost-share facilities if they are in response to the violation of county easements. New homes are not eligible for VCAP cost-share until 3 years after the residential occupancy permit has been issued.

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