Wayne Greenhaulgh, District Conservationist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service in Carbon and Emery counties, announced that the private lands conservation agency is accepting applications for consideration for financial assistance for applying conservation practices through the FY08 USDA Agricultural Management Assistance Program.
AMA helps producers adopt conservation practices and investment strategies that will reduce or mitigate risks to their agricultural enterprises.
All applications received by May 30 will receive consideration for AMA funds. Applications received in NRCS offices by the May 30 deadline will be evaluated and selected at the state level according to the potential environmental benefits and availability of funds.
Utah farmers interested in receiving financial assistance through AMA should immediately contact the local NRCS field office at 540 West Price River Drive, Price, or 1120 North Des Bee Dove Road, Castle Dale, for more information on eligible conservation practices, the application process, and receiving conservation assistance through the AMA Program.
In Utah, some of the conservation practices eligible for AMA Program funding are:
irrigation - micro-irrigation and irrigation water management;
tail water recovery - storage facility;
prescribed grazing and associated practices;
integrated pest management and associated practices; and,
soil quality enhancement practices including conservation crop rotation, residue management no-till and mulch till.
The Federal cost-share assistance can be up to 75 percent of the cost of an eligible practice. AMA Program participants enter into a one to 10 year contract period.
In order to be eligible for AMA Program participation, applicants are required to:
own or control the land,
have a conservation plan in place,
implement specific eligible conservation practices,
meet the Food Security Act 'person' definition,
and maintain the cost-shared practices for the life of the practice.
AMA is available in only 15 states, as designated by the Secretary of Agriculture, where participation in the Federal Crop Insurance Program is historically low.
AMA affords an opportunity for traditional and nontraditional program participants, such as, limited resource, beginning farmers and small farms, to apply for conservation financial assistance.
NRCS is the agency designated by the Secretary of Agriculture as being responsible for program management and leadership for the conservation provisions of AMA.
"AMA strengthens NRCS' efforts to help Utah's farmers comply with environmental standards and encourages sound conservation on agricultural land," said Lisa Coverdale, Assistant State Conservationist for Programs and AMA Program Manager in Utah.
NRCS is USDA's lead conservation agency and has worked hand-in-hand with farmers, producers, and landowners for more than 70 years to conserve natural resources on private lands.
Utah's landowners can learn more about AMA and other Farm Bill Programs by contacting NRCS Utah offices or by visiting the NRCS Utah homepage at www.ut.nrcs.usda.gov.
For more information concerning the AMA is your area, call 637-0041 in Price or 381-2300 in Castle Dale.