Farmers Reminded to Re-Enroll in CSP by May 5
USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is now accepting applications from farmers and ranchers who initially enrolled in the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) in 2013 to re-enroll for another five years.
It is optional to renew an expiring contract, and participants who do not re-enroll can re-apply and compete for funding in future annual CSP signups. However, there is a significant benefit to renewing now: the process for renewing is non-competitive and much simpler than re-applying through the competitive process later, and participants will avoid any gaps in their CSP payments that would otherwise occur.
There are approximately 7,000 farmers and ranchers with CSP contracts that will expire this year, totaling over 9.5 million acres that need to be re-enrolled to preserve and expand upon critical environmental benefits.
Applications for re-enrollment will be accepted through May 5, 2017. Under the terms of the 2014 Farm Bill, CSP contract holders can renew their contracts provided they have met the terms of their initial contract; agree to adopt and continue to integrate conservation activities across the entire operation; and agree to either meet the stewardship threshold of at least two additional priority resource concerns or exceed the stewardship threshold of at least two existing priority resource concerns by the end of the renewed contract period.