The U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced the availability of $75,000 in financial assistance available to help eligible crop and livestock producers in four Michigan counties cope with adverse impacts of the historic drought gripping the nation.
The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service is accepting applications from agricultural producers in Cass, Branch, Hillsdale and St. Joseph counties until Aug. 24. Financial assistance is available for producers to implement conservation practices that will help alleviate the drought’s impacts, and improve soil health and productivity.
Some practices eligible for financial assistance include cover crops, irrigation water management, prescribed grazing and livestock watering facilities. Eligible producers also can re-apply for financial assistance to re-apply failed conservation practices due to drought and modify existing contracts to re-schedule planned conservation practices.
USDA has also announced the following:
- Allowing producers to modify current EQIP contracts to allow for grazing, livestock watering, and other conservation activities to address drought conditions.
- Authorizing haying and grazing of Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) easement areas in drought-affected areas where haying and grazing is consistent with conservation of wildlife habitat and wetlands.
For more information, producers and landowners can visit the NRCS website at www.mi.nrcs.usda.gov or their local USDA Service Center which houses the USDA-NRCS and the local Conservation District.
For more information and location of your local Conservation District, please visit www.macd.org.