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Producers urged to sign up for conservation programs

Farmers and ranchers interested in soil, water and wildlife conservation or wetland restoration funds are encouraged to sign up now for conservation programs available from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.

The first application deadline is Dec. 31, with a second application deadline set for Feb. 18.

“These deadlines have been established to insure the highest ranked applications can be funded and implemented as soon as conditions are favorable this spring,” according to Nebraska state conservationist Craig Derickson said. “The Natural Resources Conservation Service uses a continuous application process and applications are accepted at anytime, but we encourage producers to sign up for these program dollars right away.”

The Natural Resources Conservation Service has several Farm Bill programs available to landowners and operators interested in conserving natural resources on their land. These voluntary programs provide technical and financial assistance to install conservation practices that protect natural resources on privately owned land.

“The mission of the Natural Resources Conservation Service is ‘Helping People Help the Land.’ Our employees carry out this mission by working one-on-one with landowners to develop a conservation plan that meets their individual needs,” Derickson said. “The Farm Bill programs then provide financial assistance to install conservation practices—such as irrigation water management, wetland restoration, wildlife habitat, forestry management, rangeland management or transitioning to organic agriculture. These conservation practices help keep Nebraska’s privately owned land healthy and productive, which benefit all Nebraskans,” Derickson said.

For more information about the programs and services available from the Natural Resources Conservation Service, visit your local USDA Service Center, or visit www.ne.nrcs.usda.gov.

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