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News Release

Valentine’s Day Deadline: Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program Sign-up

2.7 million available to permanently protect farm and ranchlands throughout Florida
 

GAINESVILLE, Fl.,  Jan. 9, 2014--Applications are due Valentine’s Day for the Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program to help Florida farmers and ranchers keep their land in agricultural production. The US Department of Agriculture’s program, administered by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), provides matching funds to sponsoring entities such as State, Tribal or local governments and nongovernmental organizations with existing farmland protection programs to purchase conservation easements. Interested landowners must first work with one of these eligible entities with funds necessary to match the federal contribution from NRCS. NRCS provides up to 50 percent of the fair market value of the conservation easement.

These permanent easements preserve agricultural land, important farmland soils and historic or archeological values by prohibiting conversion to non-agricultural uses. As with all NRCS easements, the landowner retains the title to the land and the right to control access and recreational use.

Applications should be submitted to the attention of: Nina Bhattacharyya, USDA-NRCS, 2614 NW 43rd Street, Gainesville, FL, 32606. 

NRCS accepts applications for FRPP funding on a continuous basis throughout the year, but to be considered for ranking and selection in fiscal year 2014, applications must be received at the Florida NRCS office by the Feb. 14, 2014 deadline. Applications received after this date will be held for a future ranking period.

For more information contact Nina Bhattacharyya, FRPP program manager, 352-338-9554.

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