What's Up at the FSA Office?

by Jeremy Leitz, Allamakee County Executive Director (563) 568-2148

Upcoming Deadlines and Important Dates
• July 4: Office Closed for Holiday
• July 15: 2018 Crop Reports

Transition Incentive Program
The Transition Incentives Program (TIP) offers assistance for land owners and operators, as well as opportunities for beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers. It provides the land owners or operators with two additional annual rental payments on land enrolled in expiring Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) contracts, on the condition they sell or rent this land to a beginning farmer or rancher or to a socially disadvantaged group. Up to two additional annual CRP payments can be obtained through TIP. New land owners or renters must return the land to production using sustainable grazing or farming methods.

TIP provides land owners and operators with an incentive to return land to production on an expiring CRP Contract in a way that preserves established conservation practices. It also provides an opportunity for beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers to purchase their own land or rent land. Funding for this program is limited, and is on a first-come first-serve basis. So, if you have a CRP contract expiring this year and do not wish to re-enroll it, or do not have an option for re-enrollment, TIP may be an option for you.  Call or stop in with questions.

2018 Crop Certification
The Allamakee County FSA office welcomes all county farmers to come in and report their 2018 crops.  Certifying your crops is a requirement for many FSA programs.  This includes all spring planted crops and land uses.  Forages and pastures were to be reported last fall, and if you missed that deadline, we will be asking for that report now and collecting a late fee.  100% of the farm must be reported to be eligible for programs.  Please report what is planted on your farm by the deadline of July 15.

FSA County Committee Nominations Launched
USDA encourages America’s farmers and ranchers to nominate candidates to lead, serve and represent their community on their local county committee. USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will accept nominations for county committee members beginning through August 1.

Producers can nominate themselves or others. This year the election will occur in LAA3 which includes Iowa, Lansing, Center, LaFayette, Paint Creek, and Taylor townships.  Organizations, including those representing beginning, women and minority producers, may also nominate candidates to better serve their communities. To be eligible to serve, producers must participate or cooperate in an FSA program and reside in the area where the election is being held.

To be considered, a producer must sign an FSA-669A nomination form. The form and other information about FSA county committee elections are available at www.fsa.usda.gov/elections. All nomination forms for the 2018 election must be postmarked or received in the local FSA office by Aug. 1, 2018. Visit farmers.gov for more information.

CRP Signup
USDA recently announced a CRP signup that runs from June 4 - August 17.  This sign-up will be for limited practices only to ensure the most sensitive land is protected, while staying under the 24-million-acre cap.  These limited practices include, but are not limited to, filter strips, riparian buffers, and grass waterways.  The full list of eligible practices is on the USDA website.

In addition to the new signup, a 1-year extension signup will run during these same dates.  CRP participants with contracts set to expire on Sept 30, 2018 may choose to extend that date for a 1-year period at the same per acre payment rate.  No new acres may be added to these extended contracts.  A 1-year extension is NOT available for those contracts where this extension would cause the contract to exceed 15 years.  Those eligible for an extension will receive a letter from USDA.

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