What's Up at the FSA Office?

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

Upcoming Deadlines/Dates
January 1: Closed in Observance of New Year’s Holiday
January 8: ARCPLC Farm Bill Meeting
February 28: CRP General Signup
March 15: 2019 ARCPLC Election
June 30: 2020 ARCPLC Election
September 30: PLC Yield Update

Allamakee County FSA to Host Public Meeting for the 2019/2020 Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage Programs
Allamakee County FSA staff will hold a Farm Bill Decision meeting on January 8th in the basement meeting room at the Farmers and Merchants Savings Bank in Waukon.  The meeting begins at 1pm and should last approximately 90 minutes.  Staff will cover the program rules and regulations, the ARC or PLC decision, and updating PLC yields.  We’d encourage you to attend and get some good information before signing up for the program.

Signup for the 2019 crop year closes March 15, 2020 while signup for the 2020 crop year closes June 30, 2020. Producers can enroll for both 2019 and 2020 during the same visit to an FSA county office.  Yield updates must be completed by Sept. 30, 2020.

Livestock Inventory Records
Producers are reminded to keep updated livestock inventory records. These records are necessary in the event of a natural disaster.

When disasters strike, the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) can assist producers who suffered excessive livestock death losses and grazing or feed losses due to eligible natural disasters.

To participate in livestock disaster assistance programs, producers will be required to provide verifiable documentation of death losses resulting from an eligible adverse weather event and must submit a notice of loss to their local FSA office within 30 calendar days of when the loss of livestock is apparent. For grazing or feed losses, producers must submit a notice of loss to their local FSA office within 30 calendar days of when the loss is apparent and should maintain documentation and receipts.

Producers should record all pertinent information regarding livestock inventory records including:

• Documentation of the number, kind, type, and weight range of livestock
• Beginning inventory supported by birth recordings or purchase receipts;

For more information on documentation requirements, contact your local FSA office.

USDA Microloans Help Farmers Purchase Farmland and Improve Property
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is offering farm ownership microloans, creating a new financing avenue for farmers to buy and improve property. These microloans are especially helpful to beginning or underserved farmers, U.S. veterans looking for a career in farming, and those who have small and mid-sized farming operations.

The microloan program has been hugely successful, providing more than 16,800 low-interest loans, totaling over $373 million to producers across the country. Microloans have helped farmers and ranchers with operating costs, such as feed, fertilizer, tools, fencing, equipment, and living expenses since 2013.

Seventy percent of loans have gone to new farmers.

Now, microloans will be available to also help with farm land and building purchases, and soil and water conservation improvements. FSA designed the expanded program to simplify the application process, expand eligibility requirements and expedite smaller real estate loans to help farmers strengthen their operations. Microloans provide up to $50,000 to qualified producers and can be issued to the applicant directly from the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA).

To learn more about the FSA microloan program visit www.fsa.usda.gov/microloans, or contact your local FSA office.

USDA Farm Service Agency Offers Text Alerts to Allamakee County Producers
Allamakee County USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) announced that farmers in Iowa now can receive notifications from their county office through text messages on their cell phone.

Whether producers are in the field, on a tractor or even on horseback, this service enables FSA customers and stakeholders to receive notifications while on the go. Producers will receive text messages regarding important program deadlines, reporting requirements, outreach events and updates.

Producers can text IAAllamakee to FSANOW (372-669) to subscribe to text message alerts from Allamakee County. Standard text messaging rates apply. Contact your wireless carrier for details associated with your particular data plan. Participants may unsubscribe at any time.

Contact your local FSA office at (563) 568-2148 if you have questions regarding FSA’s email news service or the new text message option.

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