NRCS Announces Deadline for Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program
Salina, KS, January 21, 2014—Eric B. Banks, State Conservationist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Kansas, announced a ranking cutoff date of April 4, 2014, for the Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program (FRPP).
Working through FRPP, the USDA partners with state, tribal, or local governments and non-governmental organizations to acquire conservation easements on private lands. USDA provides up to 50 percent of the fair market easement value of the conservation easement.
“In 2013, NRCS provided $1,809,450 in matching funds to enroll 7,325 acres in the Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program,” said Banks.
To be eligible to receive FRPP funding, applicants must demonstrate a commitment to long-term conservation of agricultural lands; a capability to acquire, manage, and enforce easements; a sufficient number of staff dedicated to monitoring and easement stewardship; and have the funds available needed for the acquisition of conservation easements. Applicants must be a federally recognized Indian Tribe, a state or local unit of government, or a non-governmental organization. Applicants must have an established farmland protection program that purchases agricultural conservation easements for the purpose of protecting agriculture use and related conservation values by limiting conversion to non-agricultural uses of the land.
Eligible Lands and Landowners
Eligible land must be privately owned farm or ranch lands; contain at least 50 percent prime, unique, statewide, or locally important farmland soils; have a historical or archeological resource; or have land that supports the policy of a state or local farm and ranch lands protection program. The land must also be part of a pending offer by an eligible entity; have cropland, rangeland, grassland, pasture land, or forest land that contributes to the economic viability of an agricultural operation, or serves as a buffer to protect an agricultural operation from development. Landowners that are associated with eligible lands are required to meet Adjusted Gross Income and Highly Erodible Land and Wetland Conservation provisions as set forth in the 2008 Farm Bill.
For More Information
If you need more information about FRPP, visit the Kansas NRCS Web page at www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/ks/programs/easements/farmranch/ or contact your local USDA Service Center (listed in the telephone book under United States Government or on the internet at offices.usda.gov). Follow us on Twitter at @NRCS_Kansas.
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