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How WRP in Tennessee Works

Landowner Eligibility

For easements, landowners must have owned the property for at least seven (7) years prior to submitting the application, unless the land was acquired by will or succession, or the NRCS State Conservationist determines that the landowner did not acquire the land for the purpose of enrollment in the program. To be eligible for a 10-Year Restoration Cost-Share Agreement, the landowner must only show evidence of ownership.

Land Eligibility

Eligible lands include any of the following:

  • Private lands or tribal lands
  • Prior converted cropland
  • Farmed wetland
  • Farmed wetland pasture
  • Former or degraded wetlands, i.e. drained wooded wetlands
  • Riparian areas that currently or will connect protected (determined by NRCS) areas
  • Wetlands restored under another state or federal program with contract length limits
  • Adjacent land that will contribute to the restored wetland functions and values in association with other eligible lands listed above

To submit an application for WRP contact the NRCS office in the USDA Service Center for the county where the land is located.

Applicants first complete an AD-1153 Application for Long Term Contracted Assistance.

Applicants should also provide a map of the farm or portion of the farm they wish to enroll.

Applicants will need to provide a copy of the property deed for proof of ownership and a list of all co-owners.

WRP Application Ranking and Criteria

The following documents are available in Adobe Acrobat, format:

Options for Enrollment

Permanent Easement

This is a perpetuity conservation easement attached to the property deed. This protects the restored wetland for generations in the event the property is sold. As a condition for this enrollment option, the landowner agrees to the permanent retirement of any existing cropland base and allotment history for the easement area.

USDA purchases a permanent easement under the following terms:

30-Year Easement

This is a conservation easement attached to the property deed that expires at the end of 30 years. As a condition for this enrollment option, the landowner agrees to the permanent retirement of any existing cropland base and allotment history for the easement area. USDA purchases a 30-year easement under the following terms:

  • USDA pays 75% of the easement value that would have been offered for a permanent easement.
  • USDA pays 75% of the wetland restoration costs.
  • USDA pays 100% of all legal costs to establish the easement.

10-Year Restoration Cost-Share Agreement

This is a cost-share agreement to restore and enhance wetlands and acceptable associated uplands with no easement or other land payments involved. USDA pays 75% of the cost of restoration. Landowners enter into a ten year long-term agreement to restore and maintain the site for the life of the restoration practices.

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