Heavy Use Area

The Maryland Agricultural Water Quality Cost-Share (MACS) Program provides farmers with grants to cover up to 87.5 percent of the cost to install conservation measures known as best management practices on their farms to prevent soil erosion, manage nutrients and safeguard water quality in streams, rivers and the Chesapeake Bay. 

Grassed waterways  planted to prevent gully erosion in farm fields, streamside buffers of grasses and trees planted to filter sediment and farm runoff, and animal manure management systems constructed to help farmers safely handle and store manure resources are among more than 30 best management practices currently eligible for cost-share grants.

The MACS Manual details the specifics of these best management practices and includes forms and instructions needed for a project to qualify​ for payment. The most recent version of the manual appears below and is dated March 2019. Please refresh your browser to ensure you have the latest update. Click on the PDFs below to open.

SECTION I - Introduction and Overview​

SECTION II - Eligible Best Management Practices and Cost-Share Rates (Click on PDFs below)


SECTION III - Forms and Instructions (Click on PDFs below)


SECTION IV - Appendix (Click on PDFs below)



​Contact Information

Norman Astle
Program Administrator
Phone: 410-841-5864
Fax: 410-841-5950

Office Address
50 Harry S. Truman Parkway
Annapolis, MD 21401

More Info PDFs​

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