What's Up at the USDA Office?

Upcoming Deadlines/Dates
May 15 - August 1: Primary Nesting Season - No MCM work on CRP acres
May 26 - August 28: Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) Signup
June 30: 2020 ARCPLC Election
July 15: Crop Certification
September 30: PLC Yield Update

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP)
Between May 26 and August 28, FSA will be accepting applications from agricultural producers who have suffered losses due to the coronavirus pandemic.  Additional information and application forms can be found at farmers.gov/cfap.  Documentation to support the producer’s application and certification may be requested. CFAP provides vital financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a five percent-or-greater price decline due to COVID-19 and face additional significant marketing costs as a result of lower demand, surplus production, and disruptions to shipping patterns and the orderly marketing of commodities.
More information is available at www.farmers.gov/cfap.

Non-Specialty Crops and Wool
Non-specialty crops eligible for CFAP payments include malting barley, canola, corn, upland cotton, millet, oats, soybeans, sorghum, sunflowers, durum wheat, and hard red spring wheat. Wool is also eligible. Producers will be paid based on inventory subject to price risk held as of January 15, 2020. A payment will be made based 50 percent of a producer’s 2019 total production or the 2019 inventory as of January 15, 2020, whichever is smaller, multiplied by the commodity’s applicable payment rates. A full list of eligible crops can be found on farmers.gov/cfap.

Livestock
Livestock eligible for CFAP include cattle, lambs, yearlings and hogs. The total payment will be calculated using the sum of the producer’s number of livestock sold between January 15 and April 15, 2020, multiplied by the payment rates per head, and the highest inventory number of livestock between April 16 and May 14, 2020, multiplied by the payment rate per head.

Dairy
For dairy, the total payment will be calculated based on a producer’s certification of milk production for the first quarter of calendar year 2020 multiplied by a national price decline during the same quarter. The second part of the payment is based on a national adjustment to each producer’s production in the first quarter.

Payment Structure
To ensure the availability of funding throughout the application period, producers will receive 80 percent of their maximum total payment upon approval of the application. The remaining portion of the payment, not to exceed the payment limit, will be paid later as funds remain available.

June 2020 FSFL Interest Rates
New rates were issued for the month of June and are as follows:
• 0.250% for 3 years
• 0.375% for 5 years
• 0.500% for 7 years
• 0.625% for 10 years
• 0.750% for 12 years
• 0.875% for 15 years

Sign Up for the 2020 ARCPLC Program by June 30
We mailed out the remaining ARCPLC contracts earlier this spring for farms that still need to be enrolled for the 2020 program year.  A postcard reminder was mailed to those folks that we were still waiting for theirs to come back.  So if you received a postcard, please review the previous letter and contract to ensure everything is completed correctly. If you have any questions, or need the contract modified, please call our office. The deadline to get these approved is June 30, so please don’t delay in getting these back to us. 

2020 Crop Certification
Unfortunately, we are still not able to certify crops face-to-face at the office.  Our office has mailed out farm maps to the operator for them to mark the crops planted, date planted, and shares.  If there is more than one operator on the farm, we would ask the operators who receive the maps to visit with other tenants on that farm to make sure all fields are accurately labeled, and all relevant information included (shares, planting dates, etc.). Then return them to us via mail, email or the drop-box outside the office. We will then load them and get your FSA-578 form ready for you to review and sign. We ask that you get them marked-up and returned to us as soon as possible, but no later than the week of June 8. We’ll need time to review, address any questions with you, and get the information loaded. 

CRP Reminders
The primary nesting season runs from May 15 - August 1. Please contact the FSA office if you need to perform spot maintenance activities on your CRP acres during this time. Cosmetic mowing of your Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres is always prohibited, but you can spot treat areas that are threatened by undesirable vegetation throughout the year. A written request must be made before the County Committee grants approval to conduct maintenance during the nesting season. As a reminder, volunteer trees and woody vegetation must be controlled and removed from CRP acres. Failure to control undesirable vegetation on CRP acres can result in financial penalties.

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