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News Release

Illinois EQIP Application Deadlines Set

Paige Buck, State Public Affairs Specialist
(217) 353.6606


Champaign, IL October 10, 2017— Look to the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) for conservation assistance on agricultural and forestland.  Ivan Dozier, Illinois NRCS State Conservationist explains, “NRCS has a long history of conservation planning with agricultural producers and forestry managers.  We have the technical knowledge to develop a conservation plan for your resource concerns and NRCS has conservation programs available to implement that plan.”

The primary financial assistance program is the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).  EQIP provides financial and technical assistance to agricultural and forestland producers.  To participate, producers can apply for EQIP throughout the year; however, Illinois NRCS has established two application deadlines for November 17, 2017 and January 19, 2018.  Producers are encouraged to submit an application by one of the application deadlines if they are interested in program benefits.

Over the years, producers use EQIP to successfully address natural resource issues on their farm. Some EQIP activities include installing structures to address gully erosion, improving pastureland diversity by inter-seeding, and improving soil health by increasing organic matter with cover crops.

These conservation practices can be completed using NRCS EQIP funding pools such as grazing land operations, confined livestock operations, organic, and wildlife habitat, just to name a few.  In addition to conservation practices, EQIP provides funding for the development of plans, such as Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plans (CNMPs), Grazing Plans, Drainage Water Management Plans, and more.

Producers interested in EQIP should submit a signed application (NRCS-CPA-1200 form) to their local NRCS field office or submit one electronically through the Conservation Client Gateway.  Applications submitted by November 17, 2017 and January 19, 2018 will be evaluated by NRCS staff for the funding period submitted.  

Applicants must meet program eligibility requirements to participate in EQIP.  Local NRCS staff will work with applicants to determine eligibility and help answer ranking questions.  If an application is ranked high enough to be funded, local NRCS staff will work with applicants to develop a contract and an implementation schedule.

“Using science-based practices with EQIP is a powerful way to make changes that improve water quality and reduce soil erosion on Illinois farms,” Dozier adds.

EQIP is a voluntary conservation program available for agricultural producers and forestry producers.  Through EQIP, NRCS provides financial and technical assistance to install conservation practices.  For information on EQIP, contact the local NRCS field office or visit


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