USDA to dis­trib­ute con­ser­va­tion pay­ments for agri­cul­tural land

The Covington News - - Agriculture -

WASH­ING­TON — Agri­cul­ture Sec­re­tary Ed Schafer an­nounced Oct. 1 that the U.S. Depart­ment of Agri­cul­ture (USDA) will dis­trib­ute $1.8 bil­lion in Con­ser­va­tion Re­serve Pro­gram rental pay­ments to par­tic­i­pants across the coun­try for fis­cal year 2009.

Pro­duc­ers hold­ing about 766,000 con­tracts on 430,000 farms will re­ceive an av­er­age of $50.93 per acre. The pay­ments al­low pro­duc­ers en­rolled in the pro­gram to earn an av­er­age of $4,105 per farm.

In­cluded in the to­tals are 380,000 con­tracts (4.1 mil­lion acres) for the Con­ser­va­tion Re­serve Pro­gram’s (CRP) con­tin­u­ous sign-up and 386,000 con­tracts (30.6 mil­lion acres) for gen­eral sign-up. Un­der con­tin­u­ous sign-up, pro­duc­ers may en­roll high pri­or­ity con­ser­va­tion prac­tices such as fil­ter strips, ri­par­ian buf­fers, and wet­land restora­tions at any time without com­pe­ti­tion.

Cur­rently, en­roll­ment stands at 34.7 mil­lion acres, mak­ing CRP the largest pub­lic-pri­vate part­ner­ship for con­ser­va­tion and wildlife habi­tat in the United States. This vol­un­tary pro­gram helps agri­cul­tural pro­duc­ers safe­guard en­vi­ron­men­tally-sen­si­tive land. Pro­duc­ers en­roll in CRP and plant long-term, re­source-con­serv­ing cov­ers to im­prove wa­ter qual­ity, con­trol soil ero­sion and en­hance habi­tats for wa­ter­fowl and wildlife. In re­turn, USDA pro­vides pro­duc­ers with an­nual rental pay­ments. CRP con­tract du­ra­tion is from 10 to 15 years.

USDA is­sues other CRP pay­ments through­out the year. Th­ese pay­ments in­clude a 50 per­cent ex­pense re­im­burse­ment for es­tab­lish­ing and manag­ing cover as well as in­cen­tive pay­ments for en­rolling el­i­gi­ble high pri­or­ity con­ser­va­tion prac­tices.

A ta­ble, lo­cated at, http://www.fsa.usda. gov/In­ter­net/FSA_File/en­roll.pdf, lists acreage en­roll­ments by state, num­ber of con­tracts, num­ber of farms, acres en­rolled and CRP pro­jected rental pay­ments for fis­cal year 2009.

For more in­for­ma­tion on CRP, con­tact your lo­cal Farm Ser­vice Agency of­fice or visit this web site: http://www.fsa.usda.gov.

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