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News Release

May 23 Deadline Set for Agricultural Conservation Easements Program Applications

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is accepting applications for the Agricultural Conservation Easements Program (ACEP) through Friday, May 23.

Created through the 2014 Farm Bill, the ACEP consolidates three former NRCS easement programs (Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program, Grasslands Reserve Program and Wetlands Reserve Program) into two components, Agricultural Land Easements (ALE) and Wetland Reserve Easements (WRE).

Applications filed under the previous repealed programs are no longer valid and should be resubmitted for consideration of ACEP funding.
Approved ALE will prevent productive working lands from being converted to non-agricultural uses and maximize protection of land devoted to food production. Cropland, rangeland, grassland, pastureland and nonindustrial private forestland are eligible.

WRE will restore and enhance wetlands and improve habitat. Eligible lands include farmed or converted wetlands that can be successfully and cost-effectively restored.

Applicants can sign for ACEP up at their local NRCS service center. To find the service center nearest you, look in the telephone directory under, “U.S. Government, Department of Agriculture” or visit the contact us section of the NRCS Missouri website.