Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Schuylkill County Farm Service Agency is Accepting Emergency Conservation Program Applications

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) County Executive Director (CED), Kelly E. Sundy announced Tuesday that Schuylkill County is approved to accept applications for the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) to address damages from 2018 Excessive rainfall and flooding. ECP signup will begin on October 2, 2018, and end on December 1, 2018.

 According to Sundy, approved ECP practices under this authorization include the following eligible practices; EC-1 Removing Debris from Farmland, EC-2 Grading, Shaping, Releveling, or Similar Measures, EC-3 Restoring Permanent Fences and EC-4 Restoring Conservation Structures and Other Installations.

ECP is administered by FSA to assist producers with the cost of recovery activities required to restore the agricultural land to pre-disaster conditions. Producers who sustained damage from this disaster event are encouraged to submit their request for assistance prior to beginning reconstructive work. Submitting a request after completing qualified reconstructive work may result in forfeiture of program eligibility.

“I realize that there are extenuating circumstances that must be addressed for livestock safety and health reasons, but I strongly recommend at least calling our office before any action is taken,” said Sundy.

The FSA County Committee will complete an evaluation of submitted requests and obligate available funds based on an on-site inspection of the damaged land, taking into consideration the type and extent of the eligible damage. Completion of the on-site inspection does not guarantee that cost-share funding will be allocated.

The use of obligated funds is limited to return the land to the relative pre-disaster condition. Conservation concerns that were present on the land prior to the disaster are not eligible for ECP assistance. Approved ECP applicants may receive up to 75 percent of the cost of completing the approved restoration activity.

For more information on ECP, please contact the Schuylkill County FSA office at 570-622-1555 Ext: 2.