Conservation Reserve Program

USDA offers the opportunity for farmers to weigh-in on the CRP before October 19.

by Dani Yokhna
The USDA Farm Service Agency is listening to comments on the CRP

The USDA Farm Service Agency, on behalf of the Commodity Credit Corporation, is seeking comments on the Conservation Reserve Program.

Nine public meetings are scheduled this fall (see dates below) to solicit your input.

Topics to be discussed at the public meetings include provisions dealing with cropping history requirements, crop rotation practices, contract incentives, program enrollment terms and the CRP enrollment authority of 32 million acres established for the remainder of the 2008 Farm Bill.

“These workshops will be important to receive feedback about how we can make the Conservation Reserve Program more effective for producers as well as increase the environmental benefits of the program,” said FSA Administrator Jonathan Coppess.

USDA will consider each comment received at the public meetings and during the comment period when preparing a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, which will be reviewed by USDA decision-makers.

CRP is a voluntary program that supports the implementation of long-term conservation measures designed to improve the quality of ground and surface waters, control soil erosion, and enhance wildlife habitat on environmentally sensitive agricultural land.

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In return, CCC provides participants with rental payments and cost share assistance under contracts extending from 10 to 15 years. CRP is a CCC program administered by the FSA with the support of other federal and local agencies.

Be heard
The public meetings schedule is:

Sept. 15, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Hilton Garden Inn Spokane Airport
Spokane, Wash.

Sept. 17, 5 to 7 p.m.
Hampton Inn Great Falls
Great Falls, Mont.

Sept. 21, 5 to 7 p.m.
AmericInn Lodge and Suites
Moorhead, Minn.

Sept. 23, 5 to 7 p.m.
Clarion Hotel
Manhattan, Kan.

Sept. 25, 5 to 7 p.m.
Hilton Garden Inn, Springfield
Springfield, Ill.

Sept. 29, 5 to 7 p.m.
Oklahoma City Marriott Hotel
Oklahoma City, Okla.

Oct. 1, 5 to 7 p.m.
La Quinta Inn and Suites
Clovis, NM

Oct. 6, 5 to 7 p.m.
Hilton Garden Inn
Albany, Ga.

Oct. 8, 5 to 7 p.m.
Courtyard by Marriott
Harrisburg, Pa.

Public comments are due by Oct. 19, 2009, to be considered in the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement.

Submit comments online or the Federal eRulemaking PortalEmail comments; or mail or hand-deliver comments to CRP SEIS, c/o TEC Inc., 8 San Jose Dr., Suite 3-B, Newport News, VA 23606. Fax comments to: 757-594-1469.

For more information about the CRP, visit your FSA county office or click here.


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