Technical Service Provider Frequently Asked Questions September 2003
Technical Service Provider
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: TechReg says I’m supposed to complete Conservation Planning Modules 1-5. Where can I access these modules?
A: The website address is as follows: http://www.nedc.nrcs.usda.gov/courses/courses/conservation_planning.htm
Scroll to the bottom of the page to complete Part One (which contains Modules 1-5). At the end of the modules you will complete an exam.
Q: Why do I need an eGOV account?
A: This was determined at the National level. Please visit this link: http://techreg.usda.gov/FAQeGovernment.aspx
Q: I see several references to the Washington Field Office Technical Guide. What is it? Where is it?
A: Technical guides are the primary scientific references for NRCS. They contain technical information about the conservation of soil, water, air and related plant and animal resources. Technical guides used in each field office are localized so that they apply specifically to the geographic area for which they are prepared. These documents are referred to as Field Office Technical Guides (FOTGs). Appropriate parts of the FOTGs are automated as data bases, computer programs and other electronic-based materials such as those included in these web-based pages.
The electronic version can be located here: http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/technical/efotg/. Conservation Practice Standards are located in Section IV, but you will be required to have knowledge of the contents of the entire FOTG as well.
Q: What can I charge in Washington for developing conservation plans?
A: The following guidance from the draft TSP Handbook (3-6-03) will give you a better understanding of how NRCS plans to establish not-to-exceed payment rates.
Through FedBizOpps (an Internet-based, single point of entry) NRCS will seek technical service pricing data based upon the technical services needed. Service providers will be able to access FedBizOpps, search for the notice, review the notice, link to the Technical Service Provider cost site, enter their pricing data and submit their pricing data electronically.
NRCS will analyze the pricing information obtained through FedBizOpps. To ensure competitive payment rates, NRCS may compare this cost-data information with actual billings for technical services provided to participants and any other pricing information available. Using this comparison and acceptable statistical methods, NRCS will establish not-to-exceed payment rates to make payments for technical services provided. Payment rates will be coordinated across state lines where similar resource conditions and agricultural operations exist. Payment rates will vary between states; for example, state laws may require more extensive technical services in one state than another.
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Frequently Asked Questions
For more information, please contact Washington State contacts:
Larry Johnson at 509-323-2955
Paul Scales at 509-323-2961