FSA expands area for emergency use of CRP grass

Bill R. Fuller, state director of the Kansas Farm Service Agency, has announced that livestock producers in counties approved for the Conservation Reserve Program emergency haying and grazing may now hay or graze CRP in an expanded area in the Midwest, including all counties in Kansas.

“This expansion will allow livestock producers from eligible counties to obtain needed hay and forage,” said Fuller.

Thirty-eight counties have been approved for emergency haying and grazing of CRP acreage. Marion County is not among the designated counties.

Emergency haying in Kansas was authorized to start July 16. At least 50 percent of each field or contiguous fields must be left unhayed for wildlife; and at least 25 percent of each field or contiguous CRP fields left ungrazed for wildlife, or graze not more than 75 percent of the stocking rate.

Emergency haying and grazing in Kansas is allowed through Sept. 11. Livestock must be removed by Sept. 12, and hay must be removed from the field within 30 days from the end of the haying period. Emergency haying and grazing is not allowed on the same acreage.

Livestock producers in the 38 eligible Kansas counties may purchase hay or conduct emergency haying or grazing of eligible CRP acres from CRP participants in any county in the expanded area in the Midwest.

The expanded area includes counties within a 150-mile radius of any county approved for emergency haying and grazing. The area includes counties in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming.

CRP participants with acreage hayed or grazed by livestock producers from approved emergency haying and grazing counties will be assessed a 10 percent reduction in the annual rental payment for the acres actually hayed or grazed.

Livestock producers must certify they are an eligible livestock producer in an eligible county approved for emergency haying and grazing.

Fuller reminds CRP participants in the expanded area that are not in the 38 approved Kansas counties, that they may not hay or graze their CRP for their own use.

CRP participants in the expanded area that are willing to allow haying or grazing on their CRP acreage by an eligible livestock producer from an approved emergency eligible county must agree to a 10 percent reduction of their annual rental payment.

CRP acreage in Marion County, as an expanded area under this emergency program, can only be made available for producers in counties approved for emergency hay/graze use.

CRP participants must obtain a modified conservation plan and the FSA county committee approval for the emergency haying and grazing before the eligible livestock producer may begin haying or grazing.

Bill Harmon is executive director of the Marion County FSA office.

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