National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition advises farmers and ranchers to be aware that states have begun to set Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 "ranking deadlines" for enrollment in farm bill conservation programs and initiatives. Many USDA conservation programs offer continuous enrollments, but producers need to apply by the ranking deadline in order to be considered for funding in FY 2013. State NRCS offices are able to choose one or more of the following ranking dates: October 19, November 16, December 21, January 18, February 15, March 15, April 19, and May 17. These batching-date options apply to the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and EQIP initiatives such as the Organic Initiative and the On-farm Energy Initiative, Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP), Agricultural Management Assistance (AMA) program, and Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative (CCPI). Some states have also opted to add conservation easement programs such as Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) and Grassland Reserve Program (GRP) to the same cut-off dates. NSAC offers an online list of states that have announced their deadlines so far.
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