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NRCS Announces Sign-Up for FY2023 Conservation Program Funds

Even though the FY2022 growing season is still in full swing, it’s not too early to look forward to the next. Thomas L. Morgart, State Conservationist for the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service in Connecticut has announced funding for two of his agency’s conservation programs for FY2023 – the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and the Agricultural Management Assistance (AMA) Program.

Not sure if either of these programs are for you?  Let’s take a look … are you an agricultural producer looking for ways to conserve water, or address water, air, or animal waste issues? Are you looking to reduce erosion, improve wildlife habitat, or obtain a seasonal high tunnel? Maybe you want to make your farm more resilient to climate change? Or, do you just want to improve overall conservation on your farming operation? If so, you may be eligible for technical and/or financial assistance.

EQIP is a voluntary program for those engaged in livestock, forestry, or agricultural production – including organics. EQIP offers financial and technical assistance to implement conservation practices on eligible agricultural land. It also provides payments for implementing practices that have a positive environmental impact, while protecting long-term production and sustainability. Eligible crop production includes, but is not limited to, field-grown ornamentals, fruits, orchards, plant materials in greenhouses, row crops, vegetables, vineyards, and small urban farms to larger rural operations.

AMA provides financial and technical assistance to agricultural producers to voluntarily address issues such as water management, water quality, and erosion control by incorporating conservation into farming operations.

Although NRCS accepts applications year-round, to be eligible for the first sign-up period for FY2023 funding, be sure to submit yours to your local NRCS office by October 31, 2022.

Not sure how to begin? Visit the Getting Started section of the NRCS website, where you can establish records and fill out eligibility forms. NRCS staff will need to complete an assessment of resource conditions and practice feasibility prior to making a determination of program eligibility. 

To find out more, fill out eligibility forms, or obtain an application, contact your local USDA Service Center: Danielson – (860) 779-0557; Hamden – (203) 287-8038; Norwich – (860) 887-3604; Torrington – (860) 626-8852; Windsor – (860) 688-7725.