EQIP funding application deadline Jan. 18

Published 7:23 am Thursday, December 20, 2018

Mower County agricultural producers and landowners seeking to solve natural resource problems on their farms should contact local conservation staff in advance of a mid-January deadline. 

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) accepts applications year-round for the federal Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), but has set Jan. 18 as a deadline by which producers or landowners must submit a signed application to their Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) office to be considered for funding in fiscal year 2019.

EQIP is a voluntary program providing financial and technical assistance to ag producers and landowners. These contracts give financial assistance to help plan and implement conservation practices that address natural resource concerns and for opportunities to improve soil, water, plant, animal, air, and related resources on ag land and non-industrial private forestland.

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Ag producers and landowners in Mower County interested in EQIP should contact Mower Soil & Water Conservation District or the USDA-NRCS office for Mower County in advance of the deadline to start the application process. Both offices are located at 1408 21st Ave. NW in Austin.

“EQIP provides Mower County with a significant amount of funding for conservation projects,” said Brian DeVetter, district conservationist for USDA-NRCS in Mower County. “We hope local producers and landowners consider the program as part of their farm management and make sure to apply early.”

Conservation practices installed by producers serve to avoid, control and trap nutrient runoff, prevent erosion and provide essential wildlife habitats.

EQIP provides financial and technical assistance to help producers and landowners voluntarily implement conservation practices to improve natural resources. Payment is provided for a variety of practices to address resource concerns related to water quality, grazing land health, soil erosion and health, wildlife habitat, and others.

Applications are accepted on a continuous basis for EQIP, but applications are grouped for ranking and processing. Contracts will be awarded to producers with the highest rankings until funds are exhausted.

To learn more about EQIP in Mower County, contact Brian DeVetter of NRCS-Mower County at 507-433-8429.