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Agriculture Today

Farm, ranch lands protection program funding

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February 20, 2013 | 4,245 views | Post a comment

TEMPLE -- The Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, is accepting applications for funding on a continuous basis.

Eligible entities must submit applications on or before Friday, March 1, to receive consideration for funding in fiscal year 2013.

Only eligible entities may submit applications of eligible farm and ranch land. Eligible entities are state, tribal, or local governments and non-government organizations that meet specific requirements. The entities must have an established farm and ranch land protection program; have the authority to hold and manage easements; have the capacity to acquire, manage, and enforce the easements; and have the funds to match the federal contribution.

The Farm and Ranch Protection Program is a conservation easement program that provides up to 50 percent of the appraised fair market value to help purchase development rights to keep productive farm and ranchland in agriculture uses. Land proposed for funding in the program must meet one of three eligibility categories: contain at least 50 percent prime and unique farmland soils and soils of statewide and local importance; contain historic or archeological resources; or contain land that supports the farm and ranch land protection policies of state or local programs.

More information including the application forms and ranking criteria can be found at http://1.usa.gov/hAncVt.

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