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News Release

Wetlands Reserve Program Evaluation Period Announced

Conservation Priority Report Louisiana

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Helping People Help the Land


Holiday Greetings from NRCS

"Out of the long list of nature’s gifts to man,
none is perhaps so utterly essential
to human life as soil."

Hugh Hammond Bennett
First Chief of the Natural Resources Conservation Service
(formerly known as the Soil Conservation Service)

In the news . . .

First 2012 Application Evaluation Period
Ends January 20, 2012

Earlier this week, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced that the first 2012 application evaluation period for the Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) in Louisiana ends
January 20, 2012.

If you are interested in or have applied for WRP and you would like to ensure your application package is complete and will be considered in the first evaluation period, please contact your local NRCS office.

Applications are accepted on a continuous basis for the Wetlands Reserve Program.  There may be additional opportunities for application funding throughout 2012.  Applications received after January 20, 2012, will be considered in future evaluation periods, if any, or carried into fiscal year 2013 on October 1, 2012. 

The Wetlands Reserve Program is a national program authorized by the Farm Bill to assist eligible landowners restore, create, protect, and enhance wetlands on their property.  Participation in this program is voluntary, and restoration is accomplished in an environmentally safe, cost-effective manner.  Easement payments are based on the lowest of either the fair market value of the land using an appraisal or area-wide analysis, the Geographic Area Rate Cap, or an offer made by the landowner. 

For more information on the Wetlands Reserve Program, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, or Soil and Water Conservation Districts, contact your local Natural Resources Conservation Service office or Soil and Water Conservation District.







United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service



WRP is a popular conservation program because landowners have several options for enrollment.

A landowner may choose a restoration cost-share agreement, a 30-year conservation easement, or a permanent conservation easement´┐Żdepending on their personal land use goals.

Commitment to Equality
USDA believes every farmer and rancher should be treated equally and fairly, and we are committed to resolving all cases involving allegations of past discrimination by individuals.

Referral Guide for USDA Settlements and Claims Adjudication Process


USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Women and Hispanic Farmers and Ranchers Claims Adjudication Process
If you believe that USDA improperly denied farm loan benefits to you for certain time periods between 1981 and 2000 because you are a female or because you are Hispanic, you may be eligible to apply for compensation.  To request a claims package by telephone, call 1-888-508-4429.  To request a claims package online, please visit

Native American Farmer and Rancher Class Action Settlement (Keepseagle v. Vilsack)
If you are a Native American who was denied a farm loan or loan servicing by the USDA between January 1, 1981, and November 24, 1999, you may be eligible for benefits from a Class Action Settlement.  To request a claims package by telephone, call:  1-888-233-5506.  To request a claims package online, or for more information, please visit:

African American Farmer and Rancher Class Action Settlement (Pigford II)
If you are an African American farmer (a) who submitted a request to file a late claim on or between October 13, 1999, and June 18, 2008, under the 1999 USDA settlement in the earlier class action known as Pigford v. Glickman ("Pigford") and (b) who did not receive a merits determination on your discrimination claim, you may be eligible for benefits from a Class Action Settlement.  To hear information by telephone, call 1-866-950-5547 or 1-866-472-7826.  To find information online, please visit:

USDA NRCS Access Opportunity Equity Partnerships

To find out more about this conservation opportunity and more, contact your local USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service:  Office Locator