Florida EQIP 2014
Florida 2014 EQIP Sign-Up and Application Information
The Environmental Quality Incentives Program, or EQIP, provides cost sharing to help farmers with conservation practices. All sign-ups are conducted at USDA Service Centers in Florida. Farmers can apply for cost-sharing for many types of conservation practices. Applications are accepted on a continuous basis.
Application Ranking and Selection
Annually, NRCS establishes a cutoff date for applications to be evaluated and ranked for current year funding. All applications received after the cutoff date will be held for evaluation for funding the following fiscal year.
Once an application is received by NRCS:
NRCS will contact the applicant to conduct an evaluation and ranking of the application.
The application will be ranked against all of the other applications within the local work group area/county or tribal area. Applications received to address resource concerns related to confined livestock operations will be ranked in a statewide pool.
After the cutoff date, NRCS will notify the applicant in writing of selection, deferment, or cancellation of the EQIP application.
If selected for funding, the contract development process will be initiated.
Applicants selected for funding are not authorized to begin the installation of a conservation practice until they have a CCC-1202 Conservation Program Contract, signed by a CCC representative (NRCS Contracting Officer)
The Ranking Templates used to rank EQIP applications include questions that address various resource concerns and range from Water Quality and Water Quantity to Soil Erosion and Plant/Animal Health. The more resource concerns that are being addressed the higher the applicant's score. Once all applications have been ranked the allocation process will begin with the highest scoring applications funded, until all the funds have been exhausted.
IMPORTANT EQIP INFORMATION FOR PRODUCERS
In addition to the technical responsibilities for EQIP, NRCS now has administrative responsibilities as well. This change occurred October 1, 2004, prior to that date Farm Service Agency (FSA) was in charge of the administrative responsibilities of EQIP. Therefore NRCS will need additional information from the EQIP applicant that has in the past been submitted to the FSA Office.
Producer Eligibility – In order to be considered an Agricultural Producer, there must be a minimum of $1,000 or more of agricultural products produced and sold, or that normally would have been sold. (Proof provided by IRS Schedule F showing profit or loss from farm operations.)
Cost Effectiveness is currently being addressed in each ranking tool criteria by utilizing the following methods: cost sharing on practices with longer life spans, utilizing additional partners to stretch cost share dollars further, addressing multiple resource concerns.
A practice must be started within the first 12 months of a signed contract.
An EQIP contract stays with the land; therefore, to prevent the possibility of having to pay liquidated damages and/or cost recovery a participant wishing to terminate a EQIP contract due to the sale of the land must acquire a Successor-In-Interest through the proper documentation to transfer the contract to the new owner of the land.
Special Initiative web pages:
Agricultural Water Enhancement Program
Organic Producer Initiative
Agricultural Energy Management Plans
Seasonal High Tunnels
Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) National web site
Forms Needed for Signup:
EQIP Program Application and Contract Appendix
Forms below available at:
FSA 211 Power of Attorney Form (04/2005)
CCC-36, Payment Assignments
CCC-926 AGI Certification
CCC-901 Member Information
Florida Program Contact
Contact your Local USDA Service Center or
Jeffrey Woods, Assistant State Conservationist for Financial Assistance Programs, 352-338-9515
Kenneth Morgan, Program Specialist, 352-338-9545
Odessa Armstrong, Program Specialist, 352-338-9510