The McHenry County SWCD was formed in 1947 under the "Soil and Water Conservation Districts Act" of 1937. This act specifically states that it is " in the public interest to provide (a) for the conservation of soil, soil resources, water and water resources in the State, (b) for the control and prevention of soil erosion, (c) for the prevention of air and water pollution, and (d) for the prevention of erosion, floodwater and sediment damages, and thereby to conserve natural resources, control floods, prevent impairment of dams and reservoirs, assist in maintaining the navigability of rivers and harbors, conserve wildlife and forests ..."

The Act goes on to indicate that the State finds "that rapid shifts in land use from agricultural to nonagricultural uses, ... have accelerated the process of soil erosion and sediment deposition resulting in pollution of the waters of the State." It is the SWCD's charge through this Act to assist in conserving and protecting the land, water, air and other resources of the State.

On November 8, 2011, the McHenry County SWCD and the Lake County SWCD merged and were renamed the McHenry-Lake County Soil and Water Conservation District.

  • The SWCD is co-located and works closely with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Staff from both agencies work with municipalities, private land owners, and agricultural producers on natural resource issues.
  • Staff will work with individuals to assist in resource planning for their home or property.
  • The SWCD/NRCS offices house many resource informational materials. These materials can prove very valuable to prospective homeowners, etc., in allowing them to assess a property's capabilities and limitations prior to purchasing.
  • On-site soils information for septic suitability, basement suitability and subdivision mapping are available through the SWCD. (Fees are charged for these services.
  • Natural Resource Information reports are produced for all zoning and land use changes in the District. (A fee is charged for this service.)
  • The SWCD runs a tree sale. This sale offers native species to all residents of the county at reasonable prices. (Prices vary according to species and quantity.
  • The SWCD and NRCS continue to be involved in many educational programs throughout the county. We offer programming in soils and water quality to a variety of audiences from pre-school to adult.
 The SWCD is a Not-For-Profit, Non-Taxing District. Twenty to thirty percent of the SWCD budget comes from annually renewable State and County grants. The remainder of the budget is fees generated from programs listed above.
The SWCD is governed by a five member board of directors who oversee three full-time and one part-time employee Owners and  occupiers of land in McHenry and Lake County are eligible to run for a board of directors position. The Directors are elected for two-year terms.  Elections are held each January/February, with two directors being elected in odd years and three directors elected in even years. Elected directors take office in March. 

Owners and  occupiers of land in McHenry and Lake Counties are entitled to vote in the election, held at the McHenry-Lake County SWCD office.


1648 S. Eastwood Drive
Woodstock, IL 60098
(815) 338-0099 x3   

MLCSWCD Brochure in pdf

Nondiscrimination Statement

"The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or marital or family status. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD). 

To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, Room 326-W, Whitten Building, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, D.C.  20250-9410 or call (202) 720-5964 (voice or TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer."


1648 S. Eastwood Drive
Woodstock, IL 60098
(815) 338-0099 x3