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Maryland State Technical Committee

April 25, 2012

State Conservation Jon Hall and Tom Morgart welcomed 25 attendees of the State Technical Advisory Committee (STAC).  Members introduced themselves.

Sub-Committee Reports

Forestry

Dan asked about number of acres in EQIP have benefitted forestry. Tom stated that information will be sent.

Working with the Wild Turkey Federation on a grant to fund 3 foresters for Farm Bill work, hopefully by the summer.

Nutrient Management

Spring planting and winter crop are ahead of schedule.

Maryland WIP has been submitted.

Bill mentioned that the Farm Bill is being reviewed in the Senate.

Outreach

Buddy Bowling is the new State Outreach Coordinator.

Genevieve discussed the wetland tour of some of the enrolled easements.

Discussion about Organic Farming and who/where to try to reach more farmers about available funding. Future Harvest, MOFA, MDA, and CASA were mentioned as possible contacts.

Programs

  • EQIP – General
    • 510 Round 1 and 2 EQIP/CBWI Applications Received

    • 186 funded in both rounds

    • 78 not selected for funding, over $4.6 million in applications not selected for funding.

    • 70 contracts obligated in multiple fund codes

    • Current Allocation - $6,069,937 Financial Assistance; $5,391,345 has been allocated in round 1 & 2; $678,592 remaining allocation for subsequent rounds.

  • EQIP – Initiatives
    • 510 Round 1 and 2 EQIP CBWI Applications Received

    • 82 funded in both rounds

    • 1 not selected for funding, over $12,000 in application not selected for funding.

  • CBWI
    • 510 Round 1 and 2 EQIP/CBWI Applications Received

    • 128 funded in both rounds

    • 35 not selected for funding, over $2 million in applications not selected for funding

    • Current Allocation $6,761,612; $6,373,519 allocated in Round 1 & 2; $388,093 remaining allocation for subsequent rounds.

  • There was a discussion about the conversion of cropland to pastureland and the guidelines.
  • CIG – the Maryland CIG will be posted to grants.gov this week.
  • National Water Quality Initiative
    • The following watersheds were considered for this initiative: S. Branch Patapsco, Lower Monocacy and Catoctin. Tom would like to submit Catoctin because work could be done in the headwaters and the practices would have more impact.
    • Most EQIP practices will be included in NWQI
  • CSP
    • 13 applications currently being field verified. Obligations by May 18. Security Program appeals in Talbot County definitely had an impact on our number of applications – all applications were in northern counties.

  • EQIP Oyster Funding
    • 16 FY2011 contracts obligated for a total of $1,000,000, this year only $315,000 available with a $50,000 practice payment cap. We have arranged for oyster shell to be available to our FY 2011 participants through DNR, hoping to get the same deal for our FY 2012 participants once we’ve signed contracts.
  • WHIP
    • WLFW – new partnership with NRCS and USFWS

      • Cooperative Extension is developing an online course on wildlife management. They are working with Steve Strano.

      • Western Maryland is in need of reforestation due to gypsy moth and ice damage. Maybe funding from this could benefit wildlife and the forests.

  • AMA – 15 applications, 7 obligated prior to FMMI transition, $83,000 total for FY2012 in Maryland. All Seasonal High Tunnels. All eligible, ranked applications through 2 rounds were funded.
  • WLFW - $33 million available nationwide, haven’t heard yet on our acreage and funding request. Maryland is covered by 2 of the selected species (Bog Turtle and Golden-winged Warbler). Applications due 4/30/12, obligations by June 6. Technical meetings are still on going for both species to develop ranking factors and finalize conservation practice details. There was a powerpoint shown about WLFW. • GRP- no GRP • WRP- o 19 applications have been received – 8 are new and 11 were deferred from FY11. o 9 have been selected, funding $.3.8 million for 1237.8 acres o Surveyors are finishing up 18 surveys on 1,676 acres we plan to close on this year. • WREP o 600 acres in the Nassawango/Dividing Creek watershed enrolled and restored through WRP. Application was funded, but not the specific partner yet since we don’t have a signed deal. Multi-year through September 30, 2015 Nassawango/Dividing Creek Wetland Restoration Project – Restoring wetlands in priority landscape positions to enhance habitat and water quality for wetland-dependent species: A model for Chesapeake Bay restoration.
  • FRPP 2 application have been received, 2 applications tentatively selected, Funds $1,308,500

New Business

  • There was a discussion about using goats, etc to graze for invasive species management.
  • There was a powerpoint and discussion about NFWF On-Farm Manure to Energy Initiative

NEXT Meeting July 18, 2012