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
July 15: Crop Certification
September 30: PLC Yield Update

Allamakee USDA Service Center Now in Phase 2 of Re-opening
Starting June 24, the Allamakee USDA Service Center is in Phase 2 of the re-opening plan.  While our doors are still locked, we can allow two producers in at a time, after they are screened for COVID-related symptoms. We have protective shields in place and wipe down the counter frequently. Masks are also available. We can still meet with you over the phone and in the parking lot. We’ve placed a picnic table in the parking lot that allows us to work outside with you as well. 

Dairy Margin Coverage Triggers Payment for May
DMC payments are triggered when the difference between the National all milk price and the National average feed cost (the margin) falls below the producer selected margin trigger, ranging from Tier 1 from $4 to $9.50, and Tier 2 from $4 to $8, calculated monthly. USDA prices for milk and feed components (corn, blended alfalfa hay, and soybean meal) required to determine the National average margin for May were released June 30, 2020. The actual National average margin for May 2020 is $5.37 per cwt. As a result, dairy operations that elected Tier 1 margin coverage levels $9.50, $9.00, $8.50, $8.00, $7.50, $7.00, $6.50, $6.00, and $5.50 and Tier 2 margin coverage levels at $8.00, $7.50, $7.00, $6.50, $6.00, and $5.50 will be issued a payment. Payments for margins triggered will be issued directly to producers. DMC payments issued will not be offset by premium balances due, unless assigned by the dairy operation. The full balance of the premium is due on or before September 1, 2020.

July 2020 FSFL Interest Rates
New rates were issued for the month of July and are as follows:
• 0.250% for 3 years
• 0.375% for 5 years
• 0.500% for 7 years
• 0.750% for 10 years
• 0.875% for 12 years
• 1.000% for 15 years

CRP Reminders
The primary nesting season runs from May 15 – August 1. Contact the FSA office if you need to perform spot maintenance activities on your CRP acres during this time. Cosmetic mowing of your 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 can result in financial penalties.

Highly Erodible Land (HEL) and Wetland Compliance
Landowners and operators are reminded that to receive payments from USDA, compliance with HEL and WC provisions are required. Farmers with HEL determined soils are reminded of tillage, crop residue, and rotation requirements as specified per their conservation plan. Producers are to notify the USDA Farm Service Agency prior to conducting land clearing or drainage projects to insure compliance. Failure to obtain advance approval for any of these situations can result in the loss of eligibility and all Federal payments.

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