First EQIP Signup Deadline is October 19
Oct. 2, 2012
DES MOINES, IA â”€ Iowa farmers must apply atlocal USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) offices by Oct. 19 to be considered for the first round of funding selections for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). One of USDA's most popular conservation programs, EQIP is offered through a continuous signup, but NRCS periodically makes funding selections.
Through EQIP, NRCS offers financial assistance to install conservation practices. Statewide EQIP practices include, but are not limited to, nutrient management, terraces, grassed waterways, manure management facilities, and pasture management.
Larry Beeler, NRCS assistant state conservationist for programs in Iowa, says completing applications early is important. "At a minimum, conservation plans must be developed for the area that is included in an EQIP contract," he said. "That's why it's important for farmers to get their applications completed early."
In addition to the October signup, NRCS established three more signup priority dates to batch and review applications. Those include: Dec. 21, 2012; Feb. 15, 2013; and April 19, 2013.
Through EQIP, eligible farmers address soil, water and related natural resource concerns on private agricultural lands. Five percent of EQIP financial assistance dollars are set aside for beginning farmers, and another five percent is reserved for socially disadvantaged farmers.
In fiscal year 2012, which ended Sept. 30, NRCS provided Iowa farmers nearly $26 million to treat natural resource concerns through EQIP. For more information or to apply for an EQIP contract, contact yourlocal USDA Service Center or go online towww.ia.nrcs.usda.gov/programs/stateeqip.html.
Dave Brommel, Iowa EQIP Program Coordinator