Funding to be available for Colorado farmers, ranchers
LAKEWOOD – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced supplemental funding is available to provide assistance to Colorado’s farmers and ranchers who have been affected by drought.
The funding is to help protect native rangeland vegetation and cropland soils from high-risk wind erosion caused by the state’s severe weather conditions. Farmers and ranchers may apply for financial and technical assistance at any NRCS field office located in all 59 USDA Service Centers across the state. Applications are being accepted until July 5.
“Several of our natural resources are at a critical stage,” said Allen Green, a NRCS state conservationist. “Colorado’s water supply and precipitation levels have been below average for the last five years, and this year’s conditions are said to be the worst within the last 50 years.
“As farmers and ranchers are our primary customers and the primary caretakers of our natural resources, we felt compelled to explore innovative programmatic opportunities to help. It is imperative that we assist farmers and ranchers who are willing to make adjustments in their operation to protect these valuable resources,” Green said.
Farmers and ranchers will be able to apply for assistance to install three types of conservation practices, including cover crop and residue management on cropland and prescribed grazing for native rangeland. Farmers who install cover crops and who apply residue management techniques will receive a flat rate of $10 per acre. Ranchers who apply prescribed grazing techniques will receive $2 per acre.
For this effort, NRCS developed a simplified application process jointly with the Farm Service Agency to expedite the process. This will allow producers to begin to install the conservation practices immediately.
For additional information regarding the program, contact the local NRCS field office that services your county or visit the Web site at http://www.co.nrcs.usda.gov.
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