14 Washington Co EQIP Program Executive Summary
The USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Washington County, Alabama, will hold a signup for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) for the 2014 Fiscal Year. Signup is countywide and is continuous. This program is a voluntary program designed to provide technical and financial assistance to address resource concerns or problems on cropland, pastureland, hayland or forestland.
Applications are taken at:
NRCS Jackson Field Office
3100 Highway 43, Suite B
Jackson, Alabama 36545
Hours: 7:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m., Monday-Friday
Phone: 251-246-0245, Extension 3
Contact: District Conservationist
Washington County SWCD
25 Court Street @ Frank Turner Hall
P.O. Box 848
Chatom, Alabama 36518
Hours: 7:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m., Monday-Thursday
The final date for accepting applications to meet the first batching period for ranking and prioritizing applications will be October 18, 2013. Additional batching periods will be held as needed to obligate available funding. Applicants must ensure that they meet USDA program eligibility requirements through the Farm Service Agency by the close of the ranking period. Practices may not begin until you have been notified of approval.
All applications will be ranked and approvals based on an environmental ranking worksheet that has been adjusted to meet local resource concerns. Applications with the highest point totals generated from this worksheet will be ranked higher in consideration to receive financial assistance than those applications with lower points within each resource concern. As funds are allocated to each resource concern, the top applicant within each concern will receive funding first in the order of priority listed below before additional applicants within each resource concern are considered. The remaining funding will be allocated among the resource concerns to ensure that most of the county’s level funding is exhausted and the least is turned back to the state level. In the event of a tie in points, these applications will be funded in the order of contracted least cost.
Local resource concerns in priority order are:
Cropland Erosion/Soil Quality
Water Quality/Animal Waste
Irrigation Water Management
Applications not funded during FY 2014 may be deferred per the applicant’s request to the following year’s program sign-up; however, they may be subject to program guideline modifications prior to the following sign-up’s first batching period.
The Alabama NRCS state payment rates and list of practices and restrictions will be used as the eligible EQIP payment rates and practices for Washington County.
Written leases must be provided for the length of the contract where applicants installing practices are not the current landowner(s). Structural practices installed must have prior written approval of landowner(s).
Limited Resource Farmers, Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and New/Beginner Farmers will be paid at an increased payment rate.
Prescribed burning will be held to a $2,949 per operation per contract limit.
Invasive species control limited to $1,460 per operation per contract.
Tree planting will be limited to $9,200 per operation per contract.
Site preparation for the tree planting will be limited to $6,150 per operation per contract.
Additional information is available on the National NRCS EQIP website.